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Children's Bookwatch

Volume 28, Number 12 December 2018 Home | CBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Christmas Shelf Social Issues Shelf
Psychology Shelf Self-Help Shelf Pets/Wildlife Shelf
Folktale/Fairytale Shelf Theatre/Cinema/TV Shelf Poetry Shelf
Health Shelf Board Book Shelf Picturebook Shelf
Bilingual Shelf World History Shelf Science Shelf
Coloring Book Shelf Activity Shelf Graphic Novel Shelf
Audiobook Shelf Music CD Shelf Christian Shelf
Buddhism Shelf Fiction Shelf Mystery/Suspense Shelf
Fantasy/SciFi Shelf Biography Shelf Environmental Shelf
Books in Series Story Monsters Ink Shelf  


Reviewer's Choice

Fakers: An Insider's Guide to Cons, Hoaxes, and Scams
H. P. Wood, author
David Clark, illustrator
Charlesbridge Publishing
85 Main Street, Watertown, MA 02472
www.charlesbridge.com
9781580897433, $18.99, HC, 176pp, www.amazon.com

In this era of daily online hoaxes it's easy for children ages 10-13 to be caught off-guard. "Fakers: An Insider's Guide to Cons, Hoaxes, and Scams" arms kids with information, introducing them to the funniest, weirdest, and most influential cons and scams in human history. Profiles of con artists will get young readers thinking about motivation and consequence, and practical tips will help protect them from falsehoods. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is -- except in the case of "Fakers: An Insider's Guide to Cons, Hoaxes, and Scams"! Exceptionally informed and informative, and thoroughly kid friendly in commentary, organization, and presentation, "Fakers: An Insider's Guide to Cons, Hoaxes, and Scams" is very highly recommended and will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to family, school, and community library collections.

Weird But True 10
National Geographic Kids
c/o National Geographic Press
101 West 104th Street, Suite 8, New York, NY 10025
www.nationalgeographic.com
9781426331879, $8.99, PB, 216pp, www.amazon.com

The world we live in can be an absurdly nutty place! In "Weird But True 10", kids ages 8-12 will have fully enjoy exploring just how wacky things can be in the 10th book in the wildly popular National Geographic Kids 'Weird But True' series. "Weird But True 10" is comprised of 350 surprising and amazing facts. The topics showcased include science, space, weather, geography, food, pop culture, and just about everything else under the sun. Presented with fascinating photos and illustrations, "Weird But True 10" is a quirky and entertaining compendium that is so much fun to browse through that the kids might just forget they're also learning! While very highly recommended for personal reading lists, it should be noted by school and community librarians that "Weird But True 10" is also available for their collections in a Library Binding edition (9781426331886, $18.90).

We Can Find a Way
Dina Rosenfeld, author
Amy Wummer, illustrator
Hachai Publishing
527 Empire Boulevard, Brooklyn, NY 11225
9781945560156, $13.95, HC, 36pp, www.hachai.com

An a Hachnosas Orchim inclusion story about hosting guests and making them feel comfortable, "We Can Find a Way", by author Dina Rosenfeld and illustrator Amy Wummer is the laminated picture book story of Eli, Zev and Leah who are looking forward to hosting a celebration for their Bubby's birthday. However, meeting the needs of every guest requires sensitivity and lots of creative thinking. Two of the toddlers have food allergies. What kind of treats work for them? Their uncle is using a wheelchair. He can't even get up the front steps! One of their cousins can't tolerate crowded, noisy events. Will the party have to be cancelled, or will Eli Zev and Leah find a way to include everyone? Children ages 3-6 will love the suspense and the positive attitude of the main characters. Hopefully, when planning an activity or event of their own, young readers will understand the value of inclusion, and make sure to find a way! A wonderfully entertaining story with an important underlying value message, "We Can Find a Way" is unreservedly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library collections.

Bye-Bye!
Carol Zeavin & Rhona Silverbush, author
Jon Davis, illustrator
Magination Press
c/o American Psychological Association
750 First Street, NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242
www.maginationpress.com
9781433828768, $8.99, HC, 16pp, www.amazon.com

It's hard for toddlers to say goodbye sometimes, especially to Mom and Dad! Even if it's for a short amount of time, Mom and Dad reassure them not to worry because they will always come back. "Bye-Bye!" is specifically about toddlers ages 2 to 3 and the issue of separation anxiety. Deftly written in simple language and reflective of children's realities by the team of Carol Zeavin and Rhona Silverbush, and charmingly illustrated by Jon Davis, the Terrific Toddlers series is based on understanding of the developmental level of young toddlers. A very special feature is the inclusion a "Note to Parents and Caregivers" about helping toddlers with saying goodbye. Also very highly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, and community library Preschool collections are the other two titles in this simply outstanding series from Magination Press: "Boo-Boo!" (9781433828751, $8.99, HC, 16pp) and "All Mine!" (9781433828775, $8.99, HC, 16pp).


The Christmas Shelf

Minnie Saves Christmas Read-Along Storybook & CD
Disney Book Group
c/o Disney Press
1200 Grand Central Avenue, Glendale, CA 91201
www.disneybooks.com
9781368022347, $8.99, Board Book & CD, 14pp, www.amazon.com

It's Christmas Eve and Mrs. Claus needs help, so she pays a visit to Minnie, Mickey and the rest of the gang. Will Minnie and her friends be able to solve Santa's problem and save Christmas? Children ages 3 to 5 can follow along to find out in this combination board book and CD featuring narration, actual character voices, plus Mickey, Minnie, Santa and the rest of the gang singing Jingle Bells! A true Disney treat for the holiday season, "Minnie Saves Christmas Read-Along Storybook & CD" will be an immediate and enduringly popular addition to family, daycare center, preschool, kindergarten, and community library collections!

The Broken Ornament
Tony Diterlizzi
Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
1230 Avenue of the Americas, 4th floor, New York, NY 10020
www.simonandschuster.com/kids
9781416939764, $17.99 HC, $10.99 Kindle, 48pp, www.amazon.com

Jack wants this to be the best Christmas ever, and he knows just how to make it happen. More! More lights, more presents, more cookies, more treats. More. More. More! So, when Jack breaks a dusty old ornament, he's not sure why his mom is so upset. They can always get more ornaments, so what's the big deal? Turns out the ornament was an heirloom, precious for more reasons than one. And Jack has a lot to learn about the true meaning of Christmas. A fairy emerges from the shattered ornament. She has the power to make the most magical Christmasy things happen. Suddenly trees are sprouting, reindeer are flying, and snowmen are snowball fighting. All of it is so perfect, or it would be if she could fix Mom's ornament. But she can't. So it's up to Jack to make some Christmas magic of his own! Written and illustrated by tony Diterlizzi for the Christmas delight of children ages 4 to 8, "The Broken Ornament" is very highly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections.

The Nutcracker and the Four Realms: The Dance of the Realms
Callipe Glass, author
Marco Bucci, illustrator
Disney Press
1200 Grand Central Avenue, Glendale, CA 91201
www.disneybooks.com
9781368020367, $16.99 HC, $10.99 Kindle, 40pp, www.amazon.com

Featuring the simply breathtaking illustrations of Marco Bucci, in "The Nutcracker and the Four Realms: The Dance of the Realms" author Callipe Glass has created a deeply enchanting story. Enhanced with the inclusion of an informative Foreword written by celebrated dancer Misty Copeland, "The Nutcracker and the Four Realms: The Dance of the Realms" is a very special picture book for children ages 2 to 5 that brings The Nutcracker and the Four Realms to life in a brand-new way. As the adventure from "The Nutcracker and the Four Realms" movie jumps off of the screen and onto the page, a new generation of readers and fans that will be drawn in and enchanted by the holiday spirit, the beauty of dance, and the magic of Christmas season storytelling. "The Nutcracker and the Four Realms: The Dance of the Realms" is especially and unreservedly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, kindergarten, and community library picture book collections.

The Star in the Christmas Play
Lynne Marie, author
Lorna Hussey, illustrator
Beaming Books
PO Box 1209, Minneapolis, MN 55440
https://www.beamingbooks.com
9781506438139, $16.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

All of the savanna animals are excited to audition for the school Christmas Play, except Raffi the giraffe. He's too tall to play baby Jesus, or Joseph, or even a manger animal. He feels discouraged, until he realizes that he's just the right size to play the most important part. An endearing Christmas story for ages 4 to 8, "The Star in the Christmas Play by the team of author Lynne Marie and illustrator Lorna Hussey will resonate with children ages 4-8 who are still learning to be comfortable in their own skin. A delightfully entertaining reading experience with an important underlying message, "The Star in the Christmas Play" is an ideal and highly recommended addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library Christmas season picture book collections.

Doggy Claus / Perro Noel
Derek Taylor Kent, author
Lynx Animation Studios, illustrator
Whimsical World
PO Box 241442, Los Angeles, CA 90024
www.whimsicalworldbooks.com
9780999555439, $19.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Charmingly written by Derek Taylor Kent and colorfully illustrated by the Lynx Animation Studios, "Doggy Claus / Perro Noel" is a new bilingual (English/Spanish) Christmas holiday tale about Santa's dog named Jingle. When Jingle discovers that Santa only delivers presents to boys and girls and not dogs, he takes off on Santa's sleigh, intent to deliver presents to all the dogs, especially ones in shelters with no family. By the end, he learns that there's something dogs want even more than presents on Christmas. A wonderfully entertaining and refreshingly original bi- lingual picture book story for children ages 4-6, "Doggy Claus / Perro Noel" is unreservedly and enthusiastically recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library Christmas holiday picture book collections.

All Aboard! The Christmas Train
Nichole Mara, author
Andrew Kolb, illustrator
Abrams
195 Broadway, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10007
www.abramsyoungreaders.com
9781419732959, $9.99 Board Book, $8.54 Kindle, 10pp, www.amazon.com

Folding out car by car, this accordion-style board book takes young readers ages 4-6 on a wonderfully entertaining tour of Santa's Christmas train. Each car has lots to see like elves making toys, penguins playing, and reindeer preparing for the big day, as Santa searches for his missing boot. With a running landscape dotted with objects for children to find and count on the back of the book, "All Aboard! The Christmas Train" by the team of author Nichole Mara and Illustrator Andrew Kolb is a fun, interactive ride from beginning to end, making it an especially and uniquely recommended addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library board book collections.

A Tuba Christmas
Helen L. Wilbur, author
Mary Reaves Uhles, illustrator
Sleeping Bear Press
315 East Eisenhower Parkway, Suite 200, Ann Arbor, MI 48108
www.sleepingbearpress.com
9781585363841, $16.95 HC, $11.53 Kindle, 32pp, www.amazon.com

With a family that loves music as much as hers does, it was only a matter of time before it was Ava's turn to pick out an instrument. Her mother plays the piano, her father plays the violin, and one brother plays the cello while the other plays the clarinet. As soon as Ava selects an instrument, she will be able to join them as they practice for the annual Christmas holiday concert. And her family has definite ideas on what instrument Ava should select, from the piano to the flute to the violin. But Ava isn't interested in any of them. Ava wants to play the tuba. And she gets her wish. But playing the tuba isn't as easy as it seems. And there is no place for a tuba in the annual Christmas concert. But with the encouragement of her music teacher, Ava finds a place for her and her tuba in a very special Christmas holiday celebration. An original and consistently charming Christmas holiday picture book that will be popular with children ages 5-7 year round, "A Tuba Christmas by the team of author Helen Wilbury and illustrator Mary Uhles is an especially recommended addition to family, preschool, elementary school, and community library collections.

Silent Night
Lara Hawthorne
Lincoln Children's Books
c/o Quarto Publishing Group USA
400 First Avenue North, Suite 400, Minneapolis, MN 55401-1722
www.quartoknows.com
9781786030665, $15.99 HC, $11.72 Kindle, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Children ages 5-6 and their families will joyously celebrate the magic of Christmas with Lara Hawthorne's beautifully illustrated picture book based on the world's best-loved carol 'Silent Night'. This beautifully crafted picture book rediscovers the Nativity Story in all its glory, from quaking shepherds to heaven-sent angels, as the song lyrics are brought to life on every page. The world's diversity is reflected in a cast of characters with a range of skin tones. A gorgeous book for all the family to share during the festive season, 'Silent Night' is prove to be an especially welcomed and enduringly popular addition to family, preschool, elementary school, and community library Christmas Holiday picture book collections.

Decked Out For Christmas
Ethan Long
Abrams
195 Broadway, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10007
www.abramsyoungreaders.com
9781419723056, $9.99 Board Book, $7.28 Kindle, 20pp, www.amazon.com

The mice at the North Pole are getting ready to deck the halls with all the essentials. They've got ornaments and twinkle lights, candy canes and popcorn garlands. One by one, the mice unpack all the merriest decorations, but soon the items become a bit unexpected. Hot cocoa? Fuzzy dice? A map? In a festive twist, it's revealed that it's not a tree the mice are decorating, but Santa's sleigh, all decked out for Christmas Eve! An original, wonderfully entertaining board book for children ages 3-5, "Decked Out For Christmas", written and illustrated by Ethan Long, will prove to be an immediate and enduringly popular addition to family, daycare center, preschool, kindergarten, and community library Christmas themed board book collections.

Home by Another Way: A Christmas Story
Barbara Brown Taylor, author
Melanie Cataldo, illustrator
Flyaway Books
https://www.flyawaybooks.com
9781947888005, $18.00 HC; $12.35 Kindle, 40pp, www.amazon.com

Deftly written by Barbara Brown Taylor and beautifully illustrated by Melanie Cataldo, "Home by Another Way: A Christmas Story is an enchanting Christmas picture story for children ages 6- 10 and follows the three wise men on their world-changing journey to Bethlehem. In this beautiful retelling of their adventure, "Home Another Way" fully captures the power of one very special star and gives young readers a new perspective on the three wise men and their encounters with King Herod, Mary, Joseph, and baby Jesus. Perfect for gift-giving, "Home by Another Way: A Christmas Story" is an ideal and unreservedly recommended addition to family, elementary school, Sunday School, and community library Christmas-themed picture book collections for children.

The Christmas Extravaganza Hotel
Tracey Corderoy, author
Tony Neal, illustrator
Tiger Tales
PO Box 70, Iron Ridge, WI 53035
www.tigertalesbooks.com
9781680101027, $16.99, HC, 26pp, www.amazon.com

A bear's plans for a quiet Christmas alone are interrupted by an excited frog who believes he has arrived at a vacation resort for a Christmas holiday extravaganza! In the pages of "The Christmas Extravaganza Hotel", illustrator Tony Neal brings author Tracey Corderoy's picture book story to life with her colorful, energetic, kid pleasing artwork. The result is a superbly crafted and presented picture book that is an especially and unreservedly recommended addition to family, preschool, elementary school, and community library Christmas-themed picture book collections.

Jeannie's Crab Lake Christmas
David Mulford, author
Christine Cathers Donohue, illustrator
Brown Books Publishing Group
www.brownbooks.com
9781612549682, $19.99, HC, 56pp, www.amazon.com

All the animals in the forest are abuzz. Jeannie, the kindest and most beautiful lady they know, is coming to Crab Lake for Christmas! The animals love to watch Jeannie from a distance when she visits in the summer, but they have never had a chance to talk to her before now for, as everyone knows, animals can only talk in the winter. This time, however, they can finally say a proper hello. Now in the pages of "Jeannie's Crab Lake Christmas", a delightfully entertaining picture book by the team of author David Mulford and illustrator Christine Cathers Donohue, children ages 4 to 9 can also come to Crab Lake for Christmas, and spend the evening with Jeannie and her forest friends: bear cub Pudgey and his family, kindly Mr. Woodchuck, distinguished Bellknap Beaver, and the deer, the wolves, the cardinals, and more! A charming tale of friendship, family, and fun, "Jeannie's Crab Lake Christmas" is an original and unreservedly recommended addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library Christmas-themed picture book collections.

The Christmas Wind
Stephanie Simpson McLellan, author
Brooke Kerrigan, illustrator
Red Deer Press
c/o Fitzhenry & Whiteside Limited
www.reddeerpress.com
9780889955349, $19.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

As Jo helps her mother and her baby brother on a cold and windy Christmas Eve, she searches for shelter for her little family. Her mother is ill and the baby needs feeding. There is no other option but a barn owned by a local farmer known as a solitary grouch. Nobody cares for Franklin Murdoch, and Jo doesn't trust him to care for her family. But Murdoch turns out to be less of a threat than Jo has feared. He makes the desperate family a warm sanctuary in his home. And when the wind has died and snow falls on Christmas morning, peace has come to them all. Author Stephanie Simpson McLellen's spare text is deftly complemented by the subtle but beautiful art of Brooke Kerrigan in "The Christmas Wind", a picture book for children ages 6-12 that is a reminder of the essential story of Christmas. Revealing what the real spirit of Christmas is all about, "The Christmas Wind" is an original and destined to be classic addition to family, elementary school, and community library picture book collections for the Christmas season.

I Got the Christmas Spirit
Connie Schofield-Morrison, author
Frank Morrison, illustrator
Bloomsbury Children's Books
175 Fifth Avenue, 8th floor, New York, NY 10010-7728
www.bloomsburyusa.com
9781681195285, $16.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

It's the most wonderful time of the year, and a mother and daughter are enjoying the sights and sounds of the holiday season in "I Got the Christmas Sprit" picture book by the team of author Connie Schofield-Morrison and illustrator Frank Morrison. The little girl hears sleigh bells ringing and carolers singing. She smells chestnuts roasting--CRUNCH! CRUNCH! CRUNCH!--and sees the flashing lights of the department store windows--BLING! BLING! BLING! She spreads the spirit of giving wherever she goes. And when she reaches Santa, she tells him her Christmas wish which is for peace and love everywhere, all the days of the year! An utterly charming, endearingly entertaining, thoroughly uplifting Christmas story for children ages 3-6, "I Got the Christmas Spirit" is unreservedly endorsed and will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections.

A Christmas Advent Story
Ivy Snow, author
Hannah Tolson, illustrator
Bloomsbury Children's Books
175 Fifth Avenue, 8th floor, New York, NY 10010-7728
www.bloomsburyusa.com
9781681198514, $14.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

In "A Christmas Advent Story", children ages 1-5 are invited to count down to Christmas in a lift-flap advent calendar-style storybook that depicts a snowy community on Christmas Eve, where carolers sing, skaters spin on the ice, and a boy and girl bake cookies, decorate a tree and look out for reindeer. Featuring 25 wonderfully entertaining and deftly crafted flap lifts, "A Christmas Adventure" by the team of author ivy Snow and illustrator Hannah Tolson is certain to be an immediate and enduringly popular addition to family, daycare center, preschool, and community library Christmas book themed collections for young children.

Santa's Sick of Cookies
Karen Young Foley, author
Jessica Gibson, illustrator
Belle Isle Books
c/o Brandylane Publishers
5 South First Street, Richmond, VA 23219
www.brandylanepublishers.com
9781947860230, $20.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Surely even old Saint Nick gets sick of cookies on Christmas Eve! A little boy from the Eastern Shore of Virginia is determined to give Santa some variety in his Yuletide snacks. But how? "Santa's Sick of Cookies: An Eastern Shore Christmas Tale" is a warmly charming and original Christmas season picture book story by author Karen Young Foley and illustrator Jessica Gibson and destined to be a new holiday favorite and is therefore unreservedly recommended for family, elementary school, and community library collections for young readers ages 5-8.

Merry Myrrh, The Christmas Bat
Regan W. H. Macaulay, author
Alex Zgud, illustrator
http://www.reganwhmacaulay.com
Guardian Angel Publishing
https://www.guardianangelpublishing.com
9781616339357, $10.95, PB, 24pp, www.amazon.com

Myrrh is a young and very merry brown bat named after one of the gifts of the Magi. He experiences the wonders of his first Christmas among the decorations of a farmhouse, as well as the kindness of the family that discovers him in their home in "Merry Myrrh, The Christmas Bat"! An original Christmas story by author Regan W. H. Macaulay and charmingly illustrated by Alex Zgud, "Merry Myrrh, The Christmas Bat" is a wonderfully entertaining read that is very highly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, kindergarten, elementary school, and community library picture book collections for children ages 4 to 7.

Where Do Diggers Celebrate Christmas?
Brianna Caplan Sayres
Random House
c/o Random House Children's Books
1745 Broadway, 10-1, New York, NY 10019
www.randomhouse.com/kids
9781524772154, $16.99 HC, $9.99 Kindle, www.amazon.com

Where Do Diggers Celebrate Christmas? is illustrated by Christian Slade and provides a fun sequel to Where Do Diggers Sleep at Night? Ages 3-7 and kids who loved the movie Cars, with its personable machines, will find this a fun tale of machines who celebrate their own style of Christmas during the holidays. Add a simple rhyme to the exploration for an appealingly different holiday title indeed.

The LEGO Christmas Ornaments Book, Volume 2
Chris McVeigh
No Starch Press
245 - 8th Street, San Francisco, CO 94103-3910
www.nostarch.com
9781593279400, $19.95 HC, $11.99 Kindle, 216pp, www.amazon.com

Chris McVeigh is an experienced LEGO builder, author, and photographer whose work has appeared in publications such as Esquire. McVeigh designs LEGO builds and sells the kits to make his constructions online. Now with his second volume of "The LEGO Christmas Ornaments Book" he shows, step by step, how to build 16 classic Christmas designs including a gingerbread house, Santa, reindeer, a snowman, a wreath, a poinsettia, and traditional shapes like baubles and modern geometric swirls. With easy-to-follow instructions and stunning full color photography, The LEGO Christmas Ornaments Book, Volume 2 will help young (and young at heart) readers from 7 to 77 to spread some holiday cheer with LEGO in no time! Also very highly recommended and still available is Chris McVeigh's "The LEGO Christmas Ornaments Book, Volume 1: 15 Designs to Spread Holiday Cheer" (9781593277666, $19.95 HC, $11.99 Kindle, 220pp).


The Social Issues Shelf

At The End Of Holyrood Lane
Dimity Powell, author
Nicky Johnston, illustrator
EK Books
c/o Exisle Publishing
www.exislepublishing.com.au
9781925335767, $17.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Flick is a young girl who loves to chase butterflies and jump in autumn leaves. But life at the end of Holyrood Lane is often violent and unpredictable due to the constant storms that plague her home, causing her to cringe with dread and flee whenever they strike. Flick tries her best to quell her fears and endure the storms' persistent wrath until, one day, with nowhere left to hide Flick summons the courage to face her fears by asking for help to overcome them. Written by Dimity Powell and illustrated by Nicky Johnston, "At the End of Holyrood Lane" is a picture book for children ages 4-8 that provides a sensitive glimpse into one aspect of domestic violence and how it can affect young lives. Designed to be visually arresting, emotionally incisive, and ultimately uplifting, it is a tale of anxiety shown through the eyes of a small child with an intense dislike for thunderstorms -- a fear shared by many young children. This clever duality of meaning is able to evoke a gentle awareness for young readers who may be suffering their own domestic torment but who are too scared or unsure of how to seek help and shelter from their own storms, whatever their nature. Deftly handling the serious social issue of domestic violence, "At The End Of Holyrood Lane" is unreservedly recommended for preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections.

Granny Can't Remember Me
Susan McCormick, author
Timur Deberdeev, illustrator
Carroll Press
www.susanmccormickbooks.com
9780998618708, $7.99, PB, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Susan McCormick is a doctor who lives in Seattle. She graduated from Smith College and George Washington University School of Medicine. She is married and has two boys. Her mother and father-in-law had Alzheimer's disease. In "Granny Can't Remember Me: A Children's Book About Alzheimer's", she has deftly written a lighthearted picture book about Alzheimer's disease and dementia told from the perspective of a six-year-old boy that is appropriate for children in preschool through early elementary school (ages 3 - 8). Granny can't remember that Joey likes soccer and rockets and dogs. Granny can't remember much of anything. But with Granny's stories of her Three Best Days, Joey knows she loves him just the same. Alzheimer's disease is more and more common, and many young children experience this sometimes scary and sad family situation. "Granny Can't Remember Me" shows a young boy's acceptance and love for his grandmother despite this unfortunate illness. Pleasantly illustrated by Timur Deberdeev, "Granny Can't Remember Me" is unreservedly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library Social Issues picture book collections.

Manners Matter!
Veronika Zysk, author
Temple Grandin, illustrator
Future Horizons, Inc.
721 West Abram Street, Arlington, TX 76013
www.fhautism.com
9781941765593, $12.95, PB, 42pp, www.amazon.com

In "Manners Matter!" launches the 'Temple Talks to Kids' picture book series for children ages 6- 11 by author Veronika Zysk and illustrator Temple Grandin. Temple steps away from the world of adults and talks directly to kids themselves, sharing her experiences living with and growing up with autism in kid-friendly language and colorfully illustrated stories and characters. "Manners Matter!" focuses on manners and social niceties, being what Temple considers to be the key that unlocks doors to social interaction, social acceptance, and social opportunities across our lives. Children will delight in Temple's familiar cowgirl style, straight-shooting language about the importance of manners and adults will appreciate the hard-won wisdom and advice she provides. Covered are the use of Please, Thank You, Table Manners, Manners in Public, and more! Thoroughly 'kid friendly' in tone, organization and presentation, "Manners Matter!" is very highly recommended for family, elementary school, and community library Social Issues picture book collections.

Who Am I? I Am Me!
Jayneen Sanders, author
Diane Ewen, illustrator
Educate 2 Empower Publishing
https://e2epublishing.info
9781925089325, $15.95, HC, 42pp, www.amazon.com

Frankie loves dress-ups, playing soccer, visiting Grandpa, cooking pancakes, and so much more. Frankie loves what Frankie loves! The choice is always Frankie's. Through Frankie's active and fun encounters, children ages 3-9 will soon learn that in Frankie's world there are no gendered roles - kids are just kids! Also included are Discussion Questions for parents, caregivers and educators, and extra tips on how to reduce gender stereotyping. "Who Am I? I Am Me!" has been written to open up a conversation with children about their own individual preferences for toys, activities, games, books, etc. and to break down gender norms. In the long run, if we eliminate gender stereotyping there will be more choices for all genders, the likelihood of one gender believing they have power of another will be lessened, and children growing into adults will be free to follow their passions and be truly who they are. Charmingly illustrated throughout by Diane Ewen, "Who Am I? I Am Me!" by Jayneen Sanders is thoroughly a 'kid friendly', thoughtful and entertaining read that is unreservedly recommended for family, preschool, elementary school, and community library Social Issues picture book collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Who Am I? I Am Me!" is also available in a paperback edition (9781925089318, $9.95).


The Psychology Shelf

Worries Are Not Forever
Elizabeth Verdick, author
Marieka Heinlen, illustrator
Free Spirit Publishing
6325 Sandburg Road, Suite 100, Minneapolis, MN 55427-3674
www.freespirit.com
9781631983146, $11.95, PB, 40pp, www.amazon.com

Everyone feels worried at times, and young children are no exception. Friendly and reassuring, "Worries Are Not Forever" by the team of author Elizabeth Verdick and illustrator Marieka Heinlen is picture book specifically geared to preschool and primary children that explains what worries are and how it feels to be worried. "Worries Are Not Forever" assures children ages 4-7 that lots of kids (and grown-ups) feel worried, and that they can learn to make their worries "smaller and smaller and smaller". Talking about worries, moving around, keeping hands busy, breathing deeply, getting a big hug, and thinking good thoughts are all ways for children to cope with worries. Of special note is that "Worries Are Not Forever" also includes a special section for parents and caregivers with activities and discussion starters. Very highly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library collections, it should also be noted that there is also a board book edition of "Worries Are Not Forever" (9781631983160, $8.99) for children ages 1-4.

Grow Grateful
Sage Foster-Lasser, author
Jon Lasser, author
Christopher Lyles, illustrator
Magination Press
c/o American Psychological Association
750 First Street, NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242
www.maginationpress.com
9781433829031, $16.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

In "Grow Grateful", Kiko is a little girl who goes on a camping trip with her class and learns about gratitude! Throughout the trip, Kiko discovers different things she appreciates about her family, friends, and opportunities. This picture book story is based on the "theory of mind," which is the ability to take perspective of others and recognize that each person has their own thoughts, feelings, and perspectives. Growing gratitude leads to greater happiness and interpersonal relationships. A "Note to Parents and Caregivers" provides information on teaching children how to be grateful. An original and thoroughly 'kid friendly' picture book for children ages 4-8, "Grow Grateful" is an especially recommended addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library Social Issues collections for kids.


The Self-Help Shelf

Dazzling Travis: A Story About Being Confident & Original
Hannah Carmona Dias, author
Brenda Figueroa, Illustrator
Cardinal Rule Press
P.O. Box 930237, Wixom, MI 48393
https://cardinalrulepress.com
9780997608564, $16.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Travis is a young boy who sets no limits to what he enjoys doing. Shopping and football, ballet and dress-up make Travis a one of a kind boy! But when some of the kids on the playground begin to pick on him, Travis truly dazzles. An original and entertaining picture book by Hannah Carmona Dia, that is very nicely illustrated by Brenda Figueroa, "Dazzling Travis: A Story About Being Confident & Original" is an empowering story encourages that encourages kids of any gender to challenge the social norm, revealing their true selves. While very highly recommended, especially for family, elementary school, and community library Social Issues picture book collections for children ages 5-7, it should be noted that "Dazzling Travis" is also available for personal reading lists in a paperback edition (9780997608571, $10.95) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $1.99).


The Pets/Wildlife Shelf

Cheetah Dreams
Linda Stanek, author
Shennen Bersani, illustrator
Arbordale Publishing
612 Johnnie Dodds Blvd., Suite A2, Mount Pleasant, SC 29464
www.arbordalepublishing.com
9781607187271, $17.95 HC; 9781607187417, $9.95 PB, 32pp, www.amazon.com

"Cheetah Dreams" is a fabulous example of teaming up moving, descriptive poetic narrative, lifelike paintings of cheetahs in action in natural habitats, and highly informative sidebars. The result is a first class documentation of the presently endangered cheetahs, the most rapidly vanishing cat in Africa. The natural rhythmic poetry of "Cheetah Dreams" inspires young readers to imagine ways to support the remaining cheetahs in a changing world with an increasing human population. Like all Arbordale Publications, special sections such as For Creative Minds continue to encourage learning with information on cheetahs and their big cat cousins, cheetah conservation, cheetah adaptation, and purr or roar. The best part of "Cheetah Dreams" is that both the author and the illustrator partnered with zoos and schools to experience and observe live cheetahs for additional inspiration. "Cheetah Dreams" is suitable for readers ages 4-9 and up.

Fly With Me
Jane Yolan, et al.
National Geographic Kids
c/o National Geographic Press
101 West 104th Street, Suite 8, New York, NY 10025
www.nationalgeographic.com
9781426331817, $24.99, HC, 192pp, www.amazon.com

"Fly With Me: A Celebration of Birds through Pictures, Poems, and Stories" by the team of Jane Yolan, Heidi E. Y. Stemple, Adam Stemple, and Jason Stemple is a thoughtful and beautifully curated collection of the role birds play in human life from centuries ago to present day. "Fly With Me" is also filled with real science about these wondrous flying creatures. From history and behavior to spotting and photographing, "Fly With Me" has something for every bird enthusiast. Young birders ages 4 to 8 will learn all about migration and the importance of habitat conservation. They'll find stories about bird rescues and fun facts about the fastest, strongest, and tiniest fliers. They'll also discover the best bird nests, sweet songs to sing, ways to listen for and identify the birds around them, and more. Paired with stunning art and photography and beautiful design, "Fly With Me" is valued treasury is sure to become a classic for bird enthusiasts of all ages, and certain to be an enduringly popular addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library Pets/Wildlife collections.

Emily
Cathleen Burnham
Crickhollow Books
www.crickhollowbooks.com
9781933987262, $18.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

"Emily: 10-Year-Old Champion of Rainforest Animals in Need" is a photo-documentary picture book by journalist and writer Cathleen Burnham and the fourth title in her WAKA (World Association of Kids and Animals) series of books featuring kids involved in wild animal rescue efforts around the globe. Emily is a ten-year-old girl active in a youth conservation program to save rainforest animals in western Costa Rica called Kids Saving The Rainforest (KSTR). She helps care for an orphaned baby sloth at a local animal sanctuary and participates in other activities from dramatic presentations to the sponsorship of rope bridges installed to help squirrel monkeys cross busy roads near her small town. The story highlights the impact young people can have on protecting local wild animals and preserving natural habitats. The text and photos show a young girl deeply involved in caring for the well-being of baby wild animals in need of shelter, food, and lots of love. The conservation message is clear and is skillfully blended into the glimpse of everyday life of active kids and their families who are involved in these inspiring small-scale, grassroots animal-rescue efforts, making "Emily" a welcome and unreservedly recommended addition to family, elementary school, and community library Pets/Wildlife picture book collections for young readers ages 8 to 12.

The Great Lizard Trek
Felicity Bradshaw, author
Norma MacDonald, illustrator
CSIRO Publishing
www.publish.csiro.au
9781486308828,$19.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Rocky, an ornate dragon, lives on the granite rocks in the southwest of Australia. His ancestors have lived in this hot environment for around 10 million years, and for more than 60,000 years, they have lived alongside Indigenous Australians. Rocky's habitat is under threat, and his desert relatives in the north are facing challenges due to rising temperatures. So Rocky sets out on a trip. Along with Western science, Rocky uses his knowledge of Indigenous culture and language to engage with all that he encounters on his journey. "The Great Lizard Trek" accompanies Rocky to see what the future may bring. Very highly recommended for family, school, and community library wildlife picture book collections, knowledgeably written by Felicity Bradshaw (a retired Research Officer at University of Western Australia) and deftly illustrated by Norma MacDonald (an Aboriginal Yamatji artist), "The Great Lizard Trek" will delight, entertain and inform primary school aged children as it provides a timely introduction for children ages 8-12 to some of the potential effects of climate change on Australia's animals as it interweaves indigenous language and culture with western science.

Is That a Skunk?
Gary Bogue, author
Chuck Todd, illustrator
Heyday Books
PO Box 9145, Berkeley, CA 94709
www.heydaybooks.com
9781597143998, $16.00, HC, 40pp, www.amazon.com

A skunk has taken up residence in the backyard! "Is That a Skunk?" is the charming picture book story of how Lucas and his family adjust to their urban wildlife neighbor, and along the way they learn all about these surprisingly amiable animals: their favorite things to eat, their preferred places to stay, their friends and enemies, and even how to get rid of their smell. Author and wildlife expert Gary Bogue highlights skunks' sweet natures (odiferous spray notwithstanding), and full-color illustrations by Chuck Todd add even more information to a fact-packed tale for children ages 4-8, making in an ideal and highly recommended addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library Pets/Wildlife picture book collections.

Worzel Goes for a Walk! Will You Come, Too?
Catherine Pickles, author
Chantal Bourgonje, illustrator
Hubble & Hattie
www.hubbleandhattie.com
9781787112926, $9.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Beautifully illustrated by Chantal Bourgonje and charmingly written by Catherine Pickles, "Worzel Goes for a Walk! Will You Come, Too?" is the latest title in their series for young children ages 5-6 and tells the story of a child and a dog going for a walk -- as told from the dog's point of view in an easy-reading rhythmical style. As explained by Worzel, an enormous Lurcher with 'issues', new experiences can be very scary for him, although he really, really does want to go on exciting walks. The original and engaging images on every page will utterly delight children, as well as educate them by showing them the secret language of dogs, and will help a child learn how to walk dogs in a safe and responsible way. It should be noted for parents and teachers that the information presented in "Worzel Goes for a Walk! Will You Come, Too?" is endorsed by dog trainers, and would be an essential and enduringly popular addition to every family, preschool, elementary school, and community library collection.


The Folktale/Fairytale Shelf

The Origin of Day and Night
Paula Ikuutaq Rumbolt, author
Lenny Lishchenko, illustrator
Inhabit Media
9781772271805, $16.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

In this Inuit picture book folktale, the actions of a hare and a fox change the Arctic forever by creating day and night. In very early times, there was no night or day and words spoken by chance could become real. When a hare and a fox meet and express their longing for light and darkness, their words are too powerful to be denied. Passed orally from storyteller to storyteller for hundreds of years, this beautifully illustrated story weaves together elements of an origin story and a traditional animal tale, giving young readers ages 5-7 a window into Inuit mythology. Deftly presented, thoroughly entertaining, and highly recommended, "The Origin of Day and Night " will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to family, elementary school, and community library Native American picture book folklore collections.

Don't Call Me Princess
Kate Evans
https://www.cartoonkate.co.uk
New Internationalist
9781780264653, $12.95, HC, 36pp, www.amazon.com

"Don't Call Me Princess" by author/illustrator Kate Evans is a unique and very special children's picture book which takes down the concept of 'princess'. A sassy child narrator chooses six well-known fairy tales involving princesses including The Princess and the Pea, Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, Beauty and the Beast, Rapunzel and The Little Mermaid. With simple rhyme and lively pictures she takes the stories apart with incredulous humor and charm. "Don't Call Me Princess" is a book to inspire girls (and boys!) of all ages and adults to think beyond the superficial. "Don't Call Me Princess" is an iconoclastic and very special picture book that is unreservedly recommended for family, elementary school, and community library collections for young readers.


The Theatre/Cinema/TV Shelf

Pokemon Alola Collection
Scholastic
557 Broadway, New York, NY 10012-3999
9781338328622 $19.96 www.scholastic.com

Pokemon Alola Collection is a boxed set of four easy reader chapter books based on episodes of the popular Pokemon cartoon series, which is in turn based on the monster-collection video games beloved by all ages. These stories take place in the Alola region, the island setting of the "Pokemon Sun" and "Pokemon Moon" games, and home of a wide variety of adventurous pokemon ranging in temperament from loyal to free-spirited to mischievous. The individual titles are "The Pokemon School Challenge", "Battle for the Z-Ring", "Adventure on Treasure Island", and "Old Buddies, New Battles". Pokemon Alola Collection is an excellent way to encourage young fans of the television show to read, and highly recommended for gift-giving or public library children's chapter book shelves.


The Poetry Shelf

Crazy Shoes: A Book of Poems
Brenda Mota, author
Lauren May, artist
CreateSpace
4900 LaCross Rd., North Charleston, SC 29406
www.createspace.com
9781541320444 $14.95 PB, $2.99 Kindle, 21 pages www.amazon.com

"Crazy Shoes" is a delightful illustrated book of poems written for children of all ages to enjoy (including adults and post adults) It has a fresh perspective that is rightly associated with young children becoming aware of all the world around them. There are ten prose/poems about cheering subjects accompanied with charming, brightly colored illustrations dripping with whimsey. Poem titles are A Speckle, Banana Bread Crumb, Crazy Shoes, Fall, I Am Two, Just a Kid, newts, A Pea in My Sleeve, Plain Bread, and Toothbrush. Following is the brief poem titled Newts: "Newts/ Aren't in the/ Olympics./ They have to/ Beef up/ A little./ Maybe/ If they eat/ Their/ Vegetables/ And their/ Meats/ And / Dairy/ They will/ Grow big/ Enough./ But for now/ They are not/ In the Olympics./ Maybe/ That's how/ They like it./" These charming youthful poem snapshots of life are for kids of all ages to enjoy. They are very whimsical, accessible, and human friendly.

The Poetry of US
J. Patrick Lewis, editor
National Geographic Press
101 West 104th Street, Suite 8, New York, NY 10025
www.nationalgeographic.com
9781426331855, $24.99, HC, 192pp, www.amazon.com

Compiled and edited by J. Patrick Lewis and showcasing more than 200 poems that celebrate the people, places, and passions of the United States, "The Poetry of US" is a celebration of the gift of language and the vibrant culture of the United States in a collection of both classic and never-before-published poetry. The poems are arranged by region, from coast to coast, and among them young readers ages 8-12 will find works by Langston Hughes, Dorothy Parker, Robert Frost, Naomi Shihab Nye, Walt Whitman, and more. From the familiar to the surprising, the subjects include people, places, landmarks, monuments, nature, and celebrations. Designed for sharing, but geared to younger readers, "The Poetry of US" is a beautifully illustrated treasury that is unreservedly recommended for family, school, and community library Poetry collections.

Pirates and Spooks, Beware!
Susan Weiner, poet
Bobbie Kogok, illustrator
Belle Isle Books
c/o Brandylane Publishers
5 South First Street, Richmond, VA 23219
www.brandylanepublishers.com
9781947860155, $14.95, PB, 48pp, www.amazon.com

Shiver me timbers! Pirates and parrots, mummies and mermaids -- children ages 6-12 get ready for these fun and funky creatures in poems designed to tickle your funny bone and send a chill down your spine in "Pirates and Spooks, Beware!". Between the lines of these eerie poems by Susan Weiner, a lady pirate fights her battles in stolen ball gowns, a cannibal decides to become a vegetarian, and a ghost hitches a ride in the family car. Better get started because it's all hands on deck! Deftly illustrated throughout by Bobbie Kogok, "Pirates and Spooks, Beware!" will prove to be an immediate and enduringly popular addition to family, elementary school, and community poetry book collections for young readers.

Toilet Trouble: Poems for Beginner Readers
Brett Fleishman, poet
David Harston, illustrator
http://brettfleishman.com
FBT Poetry, LLC
9781732477032, $9.99, PB, 56pp, www.amazon.com

Delightfully illustrated by David Harston, "Toilet Trouble: Poems for Beginner Readers" is a collection of 20 humorous poems by Brett Fleishman that are specifically written and designed for beginner readers ages 5-8 and in grades K-2. "Toilet Trouble" also includes a reunion of the Big Bad Wolf and the Three Little Pigs, a surprise birthday present for a baby crocodile, an uninviting hole in an ice skating rink, and so much more, making it an ideal, fun, and highly recommended addition to family, elementary school, and community library children's poetry collections.


The Health Shelf

Celia and the Glue Man
Maggie Williams, author
Elizabeth Hasegawa Agresta, illustrator
Loving Healing Press
5145 Pontiac Trail, Ann Arbor, MI 48105
www.lovinghealing.com
9781615993918, $26.95, HC, 36pp, www.amazon.com

Celia isn't like the other kids in class. She has a gluten allergy. But life without cookies, cake and pizza is no fun, so Celia decides to break the rules -- just this once. She eats a cupcake. What follows is what you might expect. Celia gets sick. Really sick. So sick she decides to give up gluten for good. But she's not happy about it. Then, she meets someone who changes her perspective. In a picture book story that is effectively illustrated by Elizabeth Hasegawa Agresta, "Celia and the Glue Man: A Girl's Journey to Becoming Gluten-Free and Happy" by Maggie Williams address a serious health issue in a way that is especially appropriate for children ages 5- 8. While especially and unreservedly recommended for family, elementary school, and community library Social & Health Issues picture book collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Celia and the Glue Man" is also available in a paperback edition (9781615993901, $15.95) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $4.95).

Lily's Hope: A Preemie's Journey of Hope
Jennifer M. Driscoll and Lilian Hope Driscoll, author
Heather L. Corey, illustrator
www.LilysHopeFoundation.org
Momosa Publishing
www.momosapublishing.com
9781940927183, $12.95, PB, 32pp, www.amazon.com

"Lily's Hope" is a beautiful testament to the inspiring story of Lilian Hope Driscoll, born two months prematurely and helped to achieve a healthy life by her loving parents and health care workers. Filled with soft pastel portraits of a growing baby with flowers, balloons, clouds and dreams, "Lily's Hope" explains to children that the miracle of a preemie's journey of hope is made possible by love and support of parents and enlightened premature child care of hospitals and health care workers. "Hope means wishing for good things to happen." "Lily's Hope" also covers the premature birth of her brother Aidan, who also lived, grew, and flourished thanks to hope and excellent health care. The book also describes Lily's Hope Foundation, which provides aid and hope to families with premature babies like Lily and Aidan. All proceeds from "Lily's Hope" are donated to Lily's Hope Foundation, a nonprofit organization at www.LilysHopeFoundation.org.


The Board Book Shelf

Bighorn Sheep Babies
Steph Lehmann
Farcountry Press
PO Box 5630, Helena, MT 59604
www.farcountrypress.com
9781560377283, $8.95, Board Book, 26pp, www.amazon.com

Children ages 2 - 4 can climb into the high mountains and bask in the sun of the dry desert with "Bighorn Sheep Babies". The rhyming text by Steph Lehmann leaps happily along with baby bighorns as they run, play and sleep their way across these pages. All of the color photographs comprising "Bighorn Sheep Babies" were taken in the wild. The result is a board book that will charm and captivate any toddler, making it very highly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, and community library board book collections!

Baptism Promises
Carol A. Wehrheim, author
Roz Fulcher, illustrator
Flyaway Books
www.flyawaybooks.com
9781947888036, $8.00 Board Book, $6.00 Kindle, 18pp

"Baptism Promises" is a special board book that very young children will treasure to read. From the inscription blanks on the inner title page (left blank for the child's name and baptism date, church, and pastor) to the final poem prayer pages, easy for a small child to remember to repeat, "Baptism Promises" tells little ones the beautiful story of the day of their baptism. Filled with colorful, creative illustrations portraying children, pastors, and families of many different skin colors and ethnicities, "Baptism Promises" explains the symbols and substance of each child's experience of the sacrament of baptism. Simple sentences and explanations are enriched and illuminated by the originally fabric-embellished illustrations rendered into sturdy pasteboard pages friendly to a small child's hands. An example of the text follows: "On this special day, our family said, 'We want you to be baptized. We promise that we will try to live as Jesus taught. We will teach you to live this way too.'" The Prayers for When I Wake Up, Thanks When I Eat, To Say When I'm Sorry, and for When I Go to Sleep are very easy for a young child to learn to repeat, accompanied with more soothing illustrations. "Baptism Promises" is a lovely baptism or christening gift for a Christian child to keep and enjoy as they grow.

Free Spirit Publishing
6325 Sandburg Road, Suite 100, Minneapolis, MN 55427-3674
www.freespirit.com

Two new board books in the 'Learning About Me & You' series for children ages 2-4 by author Cheri J. Meiners and illustrator Penny Weber belong in every family, daycare center, preschool, and community library collection. In "I Share" (9781631982231, $8.99, 24pp), A little girl thinks about the way her family, her friends, and other children share with her - and how happy she feels when this happens. "I Share" deftly guides young children to see that sharing is their choice, why they might choose to share, and how sharing can be good for everyone. "I Play" (9781631982200, $8.99, 24pp) is a simple, expressive board book that vividly shares with toddlers and preschoolers the pleasures and discoveries of play in many of its forms as it explores playing independently, observing others, playing side by side, sharing, taking turns, and cooperating.


The Picturebook Shelf

Pippin No Lickin'
Layne Ihde, author
Linda Pierce, illustrations
Morgan James Kids
c/o Morgan James Publishing
11815 Fountain Way, Suite 300, Newport News, VA 23606-4448
www.morganjamespublishing.com
9781642790702, $29.95, Library Binding, 36pp, www.amazon.com

Pippin the cat wouldn't take a bath. Because he wouldn't, all kinds of funny (and stinky!) things start happening to him. In hilarious and unforgettable ways, Pippin is challenged with realizing his actions not only affect himself, but others, too. Will his parents and classmates get him to change his mind? "Pippin, No Lickin'" deftly and entertainingly addresses the consequences of personal actions with young readers ages 4-9. A colorful and endearing picture book story "Pippin No Lickin'" establishes with children that parental wisdom is for their own health and safety and helps them develop an understanding of selfishness. Pippin's adventures even teach colors to very young readers along the way! Parents and children alike will enjoy this introduction to an immediately classic and memorable character in Pippin the cat, making it an unreservedly recommended addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library Social Issues picture book collections for children. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Pippin No Lickin'" is also available in a paperback edition (9781683509561, $9.95) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $7.01).

The Purrfect Pawse
Avril McDonald, author
Tatiana Minina, illustrator
Crown House Limited
81 Brooks Hills Circle, White Plains, NY 10605
www.crownhouse.co.uk
9781785833335, $12.95 PB, $9.99 Kindle, 40pp, www.amazon.com

"The Purrfect Pawse" is subtitled "a little book to help children pause, stretch and be grateful". First readers are gently invited by yoga posed portraits of Catreen the cat, (accompanied by a small mouse friend) to go through a series of morning stretches. Each pose is starkly engraved and fluidly described in lulling verse. "The Purrfect Pawse" is a morning to night book of poems written especially for children ages 4 to 7 years. Including an enchanting end poem "Stars in the Night," starring Wolfgang the sleepy wolf, readers are taken on a pre-bedtime night journey through starry skies to summon all the people, things, and places they love best, stir them in a cocoa filled cup, and drink them up, feeling replete with sleepy dreams of gratitude.

The Snow Lion
Jim Helmore, author
Richard Jones, illustrator
Peachtree Publishers, Ltd.
1700 Chattahoochee Avenue, Atlanta, GA 30318-2112
www.peachtree-online.com
9781682630488, $17.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

After moving to a new home, Caro wishes she had a friend, but she's too shy to meet the neighborhood kids. With a little imagination, however, Caro finds the Snow Lion. Together, they have all kinds of fun racing, climbing, and playing hide-and-seek. But when the boy next door asks Caro to come play, Caro isn't so sure. Then, the Snow Lion has an idea! Making new friends isn't always easy, but it is always worth it in the end. A powerful but gentle story about making new friends, and gorgeously illustrated to celebrate the magic and imagination on every page, and especially appealing to any shy or lonely young reader, "The Snow Lion" by the team of Jim Helmore and Richard Jones is a beautifully crafted and gently reassuring picture book story for children ages 4-8 that is unreservedly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library collections.

Fire Truck Dreams
Sharon Chriscoe, author
Dave Mottram, illustrator
Running Press
c/o Perseus Book Group
250 W. 57th St., Suite 1500, New York, NY 10107
www.runningpress.com
9780762462858, $17.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

A fire truck has had a big day of putting out fires and saving kittens, and now it's time to sleep. After making sure all is quiet and safe, he rolls back into the station for a shower, swishes and swigs a bedtime refreshment, and settles in with a bedtime story. But a hero's job is never done, and the fire truck dreams of taming a ferocious campfire and celebrating the end of his exciting day with s'mores! "Fire Truck Dreams" is simply delightful and entertaining book about a heroic fire truck preparing for bed will be a favorite for any young fan of fire trucks and everyday heroes. As always, Sharon Chriscoe lulls her reader ages 8-12 with her witty and gentle rhyming verse that is supported by artist Dave Mottram's charming illustrations. "Fire Truck Dreams" is certain to bring joy to any bedtime routine and is unreservedly recommended for family, elementary school, and community library picture book collections.

The Nap Rap
Joan Gold Cypress, author
Lola Buckwald, illustrator
Queen Scarlett Productions
9781732303614, $24.95, HC, 36pp, www.amazon.com

Even the bees are catching some Zs. All the llamas are in their pajamas. The most challenging part of a parent's day? Nap time! "The Nap Rap" offers a perfect solution. This original, 361- word rhyming song by Joan Gold Cypress is aimed at getting young children to sleep by creating a fun and entertaining bed-time ritual. Readers of all ages, sleepy or not, will enjoy "The Nap Rap" as they follow this original picture book story, enhanced with by the whimsical illustrations by Lola Buckwald. While very highly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Nap Rap" is also available in a paperback edition (9781732303607, $14.95).

The House of Lost and Found
Martin Widmark, author
Emilia Dziubak, illustrator
Floris Books
www.florisbooks.co.uk
9781782505426, $17.95, HC, 40pp, www.amazon.com

Niles lives all alone in a big dirty house filled with memories of the people who used to live there. Then one day, a little boy appears on his doorstep and asks Niles to take care of his plant. Astonished, Niles takes the pot of dirt, and wonders what to do with it. As a seedling appears, Niles realizes how empty and lonely his house is and begins to care for the plant, his house and himself. By the time the little boy returns his flower has bloomed into a beautiful poppy and Niles, and his house, are filled with hope again. A beautifully scripted, illustrated, and uplifting picture book story of loss and hope by the team of author Martin Widmark that is visually enhanced with stunning presented, atmospheric illustrations by Emilia Dziubak capturing Niles's journey from loneliness to friendship, "The House of Lost and Found" is a unique, original, and very highly recommended addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections for children ages 4-7.

Jojo and the Food Fight
Didier Levy, author
Nathalie Dieterle, illustrator
Barefoot Books
www.barefootbooks.com
9781782854098, $16.99, HC, 30pp, www.amazon.com

When a food fight frenzy erupts in the jungle, a little elephant named Jojo hatches a silly plan to help all the angry animals become friends again. With quirky illustrations by Nathalie Dieterle bringing author Didier Levy's unique and original picture book story, "Jojo and the Food Fight" is an hilarious addition to Barefoot Books outstanding collection of social-emotional books for children ages 4-8 and makes for a fresh, charming introduction to conflict resolution, sharing, and empathy. While very highly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Jojo and the Food Fight" is also available in a picture book edition (9781782854104, $8.99).

The Full House and the Empty House
L. K. James
https://www.lkjames.com
Ripple Grove Press
PO Box 910, Shelburne, VT 05482
www.ripplegrovepress.com
9780999024935, $17.99, HC, 44pp, www.amazon.com

The Full House and the Empty House are very good friends -- when they dance they admire in each other the qualities they lack within themselves. Even though the houses are different on the inside, it doesn't reflect how they feel on the outside. The bathroom of the full house was full of many bathroom-y things. There was a big bathtub with gold clawed feet, a sink shaped like a seashell, a hairbrush and comb made of bone, and cakes of lilac soap. In the bathroom of the empty house was just a toilet and a sink. In the evening when the two houses grew tired of dancing, they would rest on the hillside and look out at the world together. An original, deftly crafted, and entertaining picture book story by artist and author L. K. James, "The Full House and the Empty House" is certain to be an immediate and enduringly popular addition to family, elementary school, and community library collections for children ages 5-7.

Lucia the Luchadora and the Million Masks
Cynthia Leonor Garza, author
Alyssa Bermudez, illustrator
POW! Kids Books
www.powerhousebooks.com
9781576878941, $16.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Lucia's little sister Gemma wants to be a luchadora, (a wrestler) like her big sister, but she is more bumble and splat than pizzazz and seems to find trouble wherever she goes. When Gemma makes a large hole in Lucia's special silver mask, Lucia is incredulous and exasperated at how her little sister seems to get away with everything. But Lucia's grandmother, Abu, has an idea: a trip to the mercado (market) to get Gemma her very own lucha libre mask. There are so many masks to choose from, and Lucia can't resist trying on masks and imagining all the new secret identities she could have if she had endless masks. When Lucia realizes she's misplaced her special silver mask, a frantic search ensues with Gemma's help. Lucia the Luchadora's big heart is on display again in her latest adventure, where she learns that some things, including trouble making little sisters, are one of a kind. The sequel to "Lucia the Luchadora", the team of author Cynthia Leonor Garza and illustrator Alyssa Bermudez have once again created an utterly charming and unfailingly entertaining picture book story for children ages 3 to 7. While enthusiastically recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, and community library picture book collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Lucia the Luchadora and the Million Masks" is also available in a paperback edition (Scholastic, 9781338314533, $10.95).

Benji, the Bad Day, and Me
Sally J. Pla, author
Ken Min, illustrator
Lee & Low Books
95 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016
www.leeandlow.com
9781620143452, $17.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Nothing seems to be going right for Sammy today. At school, he got in trouble for kicking a fence, then the cafeteria ran out of pizza for lunch. After he walks home in the pouring rain, he finds his autistic little brother Benji is having a bad day too. On days like this, Benji has a special play-box where he goes to feel cozy and safe. Sammy doesn't have a special place, and he's convinced no one cares how he feels or even notices him. But somebody is noticing, and may just have an idea on how to help Sammy feel better! "Benji, the Bad Day, and Me" by the team of author Sally J. Pla and illustrator Ken Min, is an extraordinary and thoroughly 'kid friendly' picture book for children ages 4-8. Original, charming, and with an important underlying message of an enduringly family value, "Benji, the Bad Day, and Me" is highly and unreservedly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections.

Change the World Before Bedtime
Josh Chambers, Mark Kimball Moulton, authors
Karen Hillard Good, illustrator
Schiffer Publishing Ltd.
4880 Lower Valley Road, Atglen, PA 19310
www.schifferbooks.com
9780764355813, $16.99, HC, 40pp, www.amazon.com

An original, informative, and entertaining picture book, "Change the World Before Bedtime " is written in simple, engaging rhyme, as it takes an inspirational look at how the little things in life (a smile, a kind word, a simple deed) can help change the world in a big way. Through 21 stunning illustrations featuring a diverse group of young dreamers, children ages 5-8 will read about eating right, cleaning up the Earth by recycling and conserving, helping the sick and those less fortunate than themselves, and working in a group to make bigger miracles. With its underlying message that even an ordinary kid can be a superhero, "Change the World Before Bedtime" is an extraordinary and highly recommended addition to family, elementary school, and community library picture book collections for young readers.

The Cow Said Neigh!
Rory Feek, author
Bruno Robert, illustrator
Thomas Nelson Publishers
PO Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214
www.thomasnelson.com
9781400311712, $16.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Engagingly written by Rory Feek and charmingly illustrated by Bruno Robert, "The Cow Said Neigh!: A Farm Story" is the picture book story of some peculiar farm animals who wish they were like other animals on the farm. The cow wants to run free like a horse, the sheep wants a snout like a pig, the dog wants to be inside like the cat. Soon the entire farm is in chaos! With its silly farm animal sounds, clever rhymes, and adorable art, "The Cow Said Neigh!" will have kids ages 4-8 laughing out loud as they celebrate the unique strengths in each of us. A delightful picture book is sure to be read time and time again and highly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Cow Said Neigh!" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $4.99) and in a Board Book edition (9781400311897, $9.99).

Scarecrow's Journey
Timothy Lange, author/artist
http://timothylangestudio.com
Doodle and Peck Publishing
P.O. Box 852105, Yukon, OK 73085
https://www.doodleandpeck.com
9780996620536, $19.99 HC; 9780998327105 $9.99 PB; www.amazon.com

"Scarecrow's Journey' is a homespun tale about an unusual scarecrow who outlasted his farmer at his post (between posts) in the fields, witness to flying crows and the winds of change. Tied to his posts to do his job of scaring away crows, Scarecrow secretly longed to fly free like the birds. The crows taunted him unkindly: "Scarecrow, Scarecrow, tied down tight./ Scarecrow, Scarecrow, will never take flight." But Scare crow thought, "I'll show them." But later, one windy day, Scarecrow did fly aloft, with the unexpected aid of the wind, a bucking bull with horns, the creaky turning blades of the windmill, and a passing airplane, Scarecrow really did fly for awhile, coming at last to land flat on the ground, with a disappointing thud. But the kindly airplane pilot found him there, and said: "I could use someone with flying experience." From then on Scarecrow happily sat on a bale of straw, holding a sign saying "See the flying circles: Airplane Rides!" The lovely, autumn dark tinged oil paintings are the perfect pairing to the feisty Scarecrow spirit who dared to dream of flying. Children will love this autumn tale of an unlikely hero whose colorful exclamations include "Barking bunnies," " Great gophers," and "Whistling weasels." Even a scarecrow hero instinctively understands the value of dreams, is perhaps a moral.

The Gift That I Can Give
Kathie Lee Gifford, author
Julia Seal, illustrator
Tommy Nelson
c/o Thomas Nelson Publishers
PO Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214
www.thomasnelson.com
9781400209248, $17.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

"The Gift That I Can Give" is a heartwarming story by the team of author Kathie Lee Gifford and illustrator Julia Seal that shows how all children can do something today to make a positive impact on others. From simply being kind to giving a loved one an extra-big hug to cheering for a friend, "The Gift That I Can Give" is a picture book story will inspire children ages 4-8 with countless ways to show God's love. While especially and enthusiastically recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Gift That I Can Give" is also available in an inexpensive digital book format (Kindle, $1.99).

Miss Pinkeltink's Purse
Patty Brozo, author
Ana Ochoa, illustrator
Tilbury House, Publishers
12 Starr Street, Thomaston, ME 04861
www.tilburyhouse.com
9780884486268, $17.95, HC, 36pp, www.amazon.com

Generous and eccentric, Miss Pinkeltink fills her huge purse with everything from a toilet plunger to roller skates, and then gives it all away. She offers tape to fix a flat tire and a bone to a kitty: Miss Pinkeltink's gifts never quite hit the mark, but she gave what she had, and she gave from the heart. And then, with nothing left to give or to shelter herself, she huddles on a park bench, trying to sleep in the rain. And that's where Zoey sees her from her bedroom window and knows that something must be done. From the team of author Patty Brozo and illustrator Ana Ochoa, "Miss Pinkeltink's Purse" is an charmingly entertaining picture book for children 4-7 with an impressive underlying and positive message. While very highly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Miss Pinkeltink's Purse" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $11.68).

Pippa
McKenna Bray
Covenant Books
http://covenantbooks.com
9781640031128, $23.95, HC, 36pp, www.amazon.com

Pippa is a little girl with a guitar in her hand and a song in her heart. Using the gift she has been given, she travels all throughout the town turning frowns upside down in an absolutely charming and original picture book story by McKenna Bray. Of special note is that children can hear the song and sing along at www.mckennabray.com. While very highly recommended for family, elementary school, and community library picture book collections for young readers, it should also be noted for personal reading lists that "Pippa" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Oskar Can...
Britta Teckentrup
Prestel Publishing
900 Broadway, Suite 603, New York, NY 10003
www.prestel.com
9783791373614, $14.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

"Oskar Can..." is new picture book by Britta Teckentrup for children ages 2-5 that sends a simple, positive message that will empower kids to claim their own accomplishments. Tie a shoe? Brush their teeth? Wash their dishes? Bounce a ball? If Oskar can do it, they can too. A thoroughly charming and original story, "Oskar Can..." will be an immediate and enduringly popular addition to family, daycare center, preschool, kindergarten, and community library picture book collections for young children.

Honu and Moa
Edna Cabcabin Moran
Beachhouse Publishing
PO Box 5464, Kaneohe, HI 96744
www.beachhousepublishing.com
9781933067957, $12.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Moa, a loudmouth rooster, challenges Honu, a calm green sea turtle, in a race to determine who owns a clear, cool, Hawaiian spring. The bright Sun awakens them early the following morning, and the race begins. Honu uses her strength and perseverance to push against the strong currents of a stream. Moa wastes time sleeping in and then gets sidetracked as he nears the spring. In the end, steadfast Honu wins and boastful Moa is speechless for once. Set in beautiful Hawaii, and featuring characters whose cultural significance continue to influence the islands today, "Honu and Moa" is a humorous spin on the well-known fable of the tortoise and the hare. A beautifully illustrated picture book for children ages 5-7, "Honu and Moa" is an especially and unreservedly recommended addition to family, elementary school, and community library collections.

Mister Twizzle's Breakfast
Regan W. H. Macaulay, author
Wei Lu, illustrator
http://www.reganwhmacaulay.com
Mirror World Publishing
www.mirrorworldpublishing.com
9781987976496, $15.95, PB, 44pp, Ages 4-7, www.amazon.com

"Mixter Twizzle's Breakfast" is a curious children's tale told in fun-filled prose and colorful comic panel portraits of a small red demon monster who lives on stolen chicken eggs at Riverdale Farm. Mixter Twizzle seems like a possible Gollum-like character or villain at first, but the story takes readers through a journey of transformation that changes Mixter Twizzle from a self involved gourmet egg thief, to a loving, concerned vegetarian chick parent who helps bring up young chickens for future generations of Riverdale Farm. The closing portrait describes the small red demon imp reformed as follows: "Never again will the beasts of Riverdale Farm fear the impish red devil beneath the barn. To them, he is now Uncle Mixter, valiant, kind and true." The amusing, colorful prose of "Mixter Twizzle's Breakfast" is original and riveting, with expressions like: "The eggsies is coming from under the feathered beasts! My breakfast is ready, by fork and by spork! My breakfast is ready, by fork and by spork! My breakfast arrives, let the minutes come faster! Be hesty! Be hasty!" and "Bleckles!..... Yuckles, I cry, and bletchers, I moan." Taken in total, "Mixter Twizzle's Breakfast" is a metamorphosis account that traces the mystery and fear accompanying a gradual transformation from selfish demon to a loving, caring being.

Horse Meets Dog
Elliott Kalan, author
Tim Miller, illustrator
Balzer + Bray
c/o HarperCollins Children's Books
10 East 53rd Street, New York, NY 10022
www.harpercollinschildrens.com
9780062791108, $17.99, HC, 40pp, www.amazon.com

Horse is just an oversize dog with funny paws...according to Dog. And Dog? Just a tiny baby horse with a weird tail. That's what Horse thinks, anyway. In "Horse Meets Dog", their picture book for children ages 4-8, by television comedy writer Elliott Kalan and acclaimed illustrator Tim Miller have collaboratively teamed up in a clever comedy of mistaken species identity. "Horse Meets Dog" is a wonderfully funny and highly recommended addition to family, daycare center preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collection.

Stop That Yawn!
Caron Levis, author
LeUyen Pham, illustrator
Atheneum
c/o Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
1230 Avenue of the Americas, 4th floor, New York, NY 10020
www.simonandschuster.com/kids
9781481441797, $17.99, HC, 48pp, www.amazon.com

Gabby Wild has had enough of bedtime. Yawn, curl, snuggle, snore -- what a bore! So instead of tucking in, she jets out (with poor Granny in tow) to a place where beds are for bouncing, hushes are shushed, and it's never too late for ice cream. But sometimes, even when you grit your teeth and seal your lips, it's impossible to stop that -- YAWN! There's a yawn on the loose! Can Gabby stop that yawn from spreading the snooze, or will it be lights out for Never Sleeping City? An original picture book story for children ages 4-8 by Caron Levis that is charmingly illustrated by LeUyen Pham, "Stop That Yawn!" is an entertaining delight that will grace any family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, or community library collection. It should be noted that "Stop That Yawn!" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $10.99).

Little Brown
Marla Frazee
Beach Lane
c/o Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
1230 Avenue of the Americas, 4th floor, New York, NY 10020
www.simonandschuster.com/kids
9781481425223, $17.99, HC, 40pp, www.amazon.com

Little Brown is one cranky canine because no one ever plays with him at the animal shelter. Or maybe no one ever plays with him because he is cranky. Either way, Little Brown decides today is the day to take action, so he takes all of the toys and sticks and blankets from all of the dogs at the shelter and won't give them back. But what will happen now? Written and illustrated by two- time Caldecott Honoree Marla Frazee, "Little Brown" is very highly recommended for the family, elementary school, and community library picture book collections for children ages 5-8. It should be noted for the personal lists of young readers that "Little Brown" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $10.99).

Sean Awesome: A Mission at Night
Jiwon Hwang, author
Sung Hong, illustrator
Simply Read Books
www.simplyreadbooks.com/home.php
9781772290295, $15.95, HC, 40pp, www.amazon.com

Sean Awesome is an imaginative boy who is scared to sleep all by himself. But one night, Sean comes up with a great idea to sleep in mommy's room instead. His mission at night begins. A tablecloth becomes an invisibility cloak, sunglasses and a mustache transform Sean into a secret agent, and more, in this picture book for children ages 3-5 featuring adorable cut-paper illustrations that takes the children on an empowering journey to find their courage through fun and creativity. A wonderfully original and entertaining addition to family, daycare center, preschool, kindergarten, and community library picture book collections, "Sean Awesome: A Mission at Night" is highly and unreservedly recommended.

Princess Arabella and the Giant Cake
Mylo Freeman
Cassava Republic Press
9781911115663, $16.95, HC, 28pp, www.amazon.com

It is almost Granny's birthday and Princess Arabella and her friends set out to bake the most DELICIOUS and most GIGANTIC cake in the entire world. But who will be the winner - Princess Arabella, Prince Mimoen, Princess Sophie or Princess Ling? And what is that surprise in the Giant Cake?! A new title in the popular 'Princess Arabella' series by author and illustrator Mylo Freeman, "Princess Arabella and the Giant Cake" is a simply delightful picture book story for children aged 3-8. While very highly recommended, especially for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Princess Arabella and the Giant Cake" is also available in a paperback edition (9781911115427, $10.95).

Lorraine
Ketch Secor, author
Higgins Bond, illustrator
Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
c/o Sourcebooks Inc.
1935 Brookdale Road, #139, Naperville, IL 60563
www.sourcebooks.com
9781492616924, $17.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Lorraine and her Pa Paw spend their days celebrating life with the music of the Tennessee hills. With Pa Paw's harmonica and Lorraine's pennywhistle, the pair can face just about anything. But when a fearsome storm rolls in and their instruments are nowhere to be found, can Lorraine find the music inside herself to get them through? A delightfully entertaining and deftly crafted picture book story by the team of author Ketch Secor and illustrator Higgins Bond, "Lorraine: The Girl Who Sang The Storm Away" is especially and unreservedly recommended addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library collections for children ages 4-8.

Giraffe and Bird Together Again
Rebecca Bender
Pajama Press
http://pajamapress.ca
9781772780512, $17.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Bird lives for adventure. He wants to swoop, soar, and explore. Giraffe is perfectly happy right where he is, thank you very much. He never worries when Bird flits off for a while. But one afternoon his friend fails to return. Giraffe has a bad feeling that something has happened to Bird. Giraffe dreads the wide world full of tangled forests, craggy mountains, and mysterious plains. But he doesn't hesitate. If Bird is in trouble, then Giraffe will find and rescue him. In "Giraffe and Bird Together Again" author and illustrator Rebecca Bender takes Giraffe and Bird to new heights of courage, ingenuity, and humor as the two unlikely companions are firmer in their friendship -- but their antics are just as uproarious as ever. Children ages 4-7 will laugh and cheer as Giraffe and Bird discover just how far each will go for the other! A delightfully entertaining story from first page to last, "Giraffe and Bird Together Again" is unreservedly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections.

Alycat and the Friendship Friday
Alysson Foti Bourque, author
Chiara a Civati, illustrator
Mascot Publishing
560 Herndon Parkway, #120, Herndon, VA 20170
http://mascotbooks.com
9781684019038, $14.95, HC, 38pp, www.amazon.com

Alycat's teacher has something special planned for Friday: a field trip! But when a new student joins the class, someone feels left out. Can Alycat use her creativity and imagination to help everyone feel included? "Alycat and the Friendship Friday" is the third title in the popular Alycat picture book series by author Alysson Foti Bourque and illustrator Chiara a Civati. A thoroughly charming and entertaining read for children that also holds an important social lesson about inclusion, "Alycat and the Friendship Friday" is very highly recommended for family, elementary school, and community library picture book collections.

Goat's Coat
Tom Percival, author
Christine Pym, illustrator
Bloomsbury Children's Books
175 Fifth Avenue, 8th floor, New York, NY 10010-7728
www.bloomsburyusa.com
9781681199016, $16.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Alfonzo the goat just couldn't be happier because Alfonzo just got an amazing new coat, and he feels like a million dollars! But when he discovers some creatures in need of help, will Alfonzo be able to give up his treasured possession to save the day? Engagingly written by Tom Percival and charmingly illustrated by Christine Pym, "Goat's Coat" is a wonderfully entertaining picture book for children ages 3-6. With its deftly scripted and underlying message about kindness, "Goat's Coat" is unreservedly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Goat's Coat" is also available in a paperback edition (9781408881019, $6.99) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $11.53).

If da Vinci Painted a Dinosaur
Amy Newbold, author
Greg Newbold, illustrator
Tilbury House, Publishers
12 Starr Street, Thomaston, ME 04861
www.tilburyhouse.com
9780884486671, $17.95, HC, 40pp, www.amazon.com

"If da Vinci Painted a Dinosaur " by the team of author Amy Newbold and illustrator Greg Newbold is sequel to their tour de force children's art-history picture book "If Picasso Painted a Snowman". Amy Newbold conveys nineteen artists' styles in a few deft words, while Greg Newbold's chameleon-like artistry shows us Edgar Degas' dinosaur ballerinas, Cassius Coolidge's dinosaurs playing Go Fish, Hokusai's dinosaurs surfing a giant wave, and dinosaurs smelling flowers in Mary Cassatt's garden; grazing in Grandma Moses' green valley; peeking around Diego Rivera's lilies; tiptoeing through Baishi's inky bamboo; and cavorting, stampeding, or hiding in canvases by Henri Matisse, Andy Warhol, Frida Kahlo, Franz Marc, Harrison Begay, Alma Thomas, Aaron Douglas, Mark Rothko, Lois Mailou Jones, Marguerite Zorach, and Edvard Munch. And, of course, striking a Mona Lisa pose for Leonardo da Vinci. The guide for this tour is an engaging hamster who is joined in the final pages by a tiny dino artist. Thumbnail biographies of the artists identify their iconic works, completing this tour of the creative imagination. Certain to be an immediate and enduringly popular addition to family, elementary school, and community library picture book collections for children ages 6-9, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "If da Vinci Painted a Dinosaur" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $11.68).

Socks For Mr Wolf
Tatyana Feeney
O'Brien Press
c/o Dufour Editions, Inc.
PO Box 7, 124 Byers Road, Chester Springs, PA 19425-0007
www.dufoureditions.com
9781847179067, $23.00, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Mr Wolf loves looking good. Mr Wolf loves to dance. But more than anything in the world Mr Wolf loves his beautiful socks. Until one day, a hole appears in one. What can he do? In this delightfully entertaining picture book by author and illustrator Tatyana Feeney, children ages 4-6 will follow the rather dapper Mr Wolf on a woolly adventure around Ireland as he tries to save his socks! Original and colorful, "Socks For Mr. Wolf" is unreservedly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections.

The Bossy Pirate
John Steven Gurney
Schiffer Publishing Ltd.
4880 Lower Valley Road, Atglen, PA 19310
www.schifferbooks.com
9780764356254, $16.99, HC, 48pp, www.amazon.com

When Salty Jack pretends his bedroom is a pirate ship, his friends help him tie ropes to serve as rigging and sheets to serve as sails. Crew mates Scallywag Sanjay and Barnacle Bob hoist the sails, and soon the friends are cruising past flying fish and secret caves. But their daring adventure goes to the dogs when Captain Salty Jack barks out too many orders and Millie the Mermaid abandons ship, setting an example for the rest of the crew. When Jack discovers it's not as much fun playing alone, he must figure out a way to get his friends back. Children ages 5 to 6 will discover, along with Captain Jack, that an adventure can be even more thrilling when everyone is allowed to share their creative ideas, and even steer the ship. It's mutiny on the high seas and a light-hearted lesson in playing well with others that makes author/illustrator John Steven Gurney's "The Bossy Pirate" a welcome and very highly recommended addition to family, elementary school, and community library picture book collections.

Sizing Up Winter
Lizann Flatt, author
Ashley Barron, illustrator
Owlkids Books Inc.
www.owlkidsbooks.com
9781926973821, $15.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

As young readers ages 5-7 journey into the natural world, they will discover that numbers, patterns, shapes (and much more!) can be found in everyday plants and animals. What if animals and plants knew math, just like us? Would snowflakes all fall from the same height in the sky? Would otters spread themselves evenly across lakes? Would groundhogs be aware of the date? In "Sizing Up Winter", the third title in author Lizann Flat and illustrator Ashley Barron's the 'Math in Nature' series, nature comes to life to help young children grasp concepts of time and measurement. While very highly recommended for family, elementary school, and community library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Sizing Up Winter" is also available in a paperback edition (9781771473392, $7.95).

What Would I Do, To Make Sure You're Not Blue
Matthew Boyd
Independently Published
9780692067765, $11.97, PB, 24pp, www.amazon.com

What would you do to make sure your little one wasn't blue? Would you fix their teddy bear? Would you gather stars right out of the sky to make them smile as they look up from their crib? A sweet rhyming picture book, "What Would I Do, To Make Sure You're Not Blue" by author and illustrator Matthew Boyd is a fun quick read for parents and grandparents to share with children ages 3-5. With simple shapes for the illustrations and bright colors, "What Would I Do, To Make Sure You're Not Blue" is the perfect book for new parents and grandparents alike -- and will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to daycare center, preschool, kindergarten, and community library picture book collections.

JT Owl Learns to Share
Dana S. Neer, author
Anne O. Duff, illustrator
https://www.facebook.com/JTOwlBooks
Prairie Publications
9780997281712, $11.95, PB, 28pp, www.amazon.com

JT Owl has spent many a time recounting to his friend Ralley the events that occur during his nighttime flights. Though Ralley imagines JT's evenings to be filled with adventures that deal with dragons and monsters, JT's greatest obstacles are not dragons or monsters, but, rather, an unruly threesome, the Coyote Brothers. By learning how to deal with the Coyote Brothers, JT will begin to understand why others may be cruel or greedy at times, and through it all, will learn about the importance of sharing and the rewards that come from it. An original picture book story for children ages 5-7 by author Dana S. Neer and illustrated by Anne O. Duff, "JT Owl Learns to Share" is a warmly entertaining and thoroughly 'kid friendly' read from first page to last, making it an ideal and popular addition to family, elementary school, and community library collections for young readers.

Space Station Vacation
Darling Chambers Eichman, author
Glori Alexander, illustrator
Doodle and Peck Publishing
PO Box 852105, Yukon, OK 73085
9781732363700, $19.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Alec is a young mouse who simply loves outer space! So on Christmas break he stows away on a rocket headed to the space station. When he arrives, Alec builds a comfy nest of wires and settles in for a lovely vacation. But soon, the space station's robot arm, the toilet, and even the exercise equipment, all go crazy! Uh, oh. Houston, we've got a problem. Who will save all the astronauts and one small mouse from total disaster? An original picture book story from the team of author Darling Champers Eichman and illustrator Glori Alexander, "Space Station Vacation" will prove to be an immediate and enduringly popular addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library picture book collections for children ages 3-8. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Space Station Vacation' is also available in a paperback edition (9781732771307, $10.99).

Save This Penguin: He's In Big Trouble
Aunt B., author
Flaminia Kennedy, illustrator
Littleheads Publishing
9781983393983, $9.99, PB, 44pp, www.amazon.com

A young penguin from South Africa accidentally finds himself off on a big adventure when he wanders onboard a cargo ship. As a stowaway, he is threatened with having to walk the plank. Who will help him? How will he ever find a family to love and care for him? And just what is his name, anyway? With beautiful full page illustrations by Flaminia Kennedy effectively enhancing the charmingly engaging and original story by Aunt B, "Save This Penguin: He's In Big Trouble" is an especially and unreservedly recommended addition to family, elementary school, and community library picture book collections for young readers.

The Red Oak Rocking Chair
Nelibeth Plaza
Liferich
9781489714237, $26.99, HC, 28pp, www.amazon.com

What makes a rocking chair so appealing for rocking? People rock for comfort, fun, relaxation, pleasure, or rest, so there must be something special about a rocking chair. In her picture book, "The Red Oak Rocking Chair", Nelibeth Plaza (who has served for Twenty-five years in the New York City Department of Education as an elementary school teacher and formerly as an assistant principal, working with children and having a passion for reading aloud in the classroom) tells the story of one particular rocking chair that shares surprising, heartwarming, joyful, and sorrowful details of a family. A handcrafted, wooden rocking chair, intended for giving comfort and pleasure to others, goes on its own journey of love, joy, discomfort, excitement, pleasure, and pain as a new baby comes into the family. As it first rocks the baby and then witnesses her grow up, the red oak rocking chair gives readers details of each sensation, from stinky diaper smells to being bitten by the baby's incoming teeth! Along with the excitement, joys, and laughter of a baby and exploring toddler are the bittersweet times of detachment when a child must all too soon grow up and begin her own journey into the world. The Red Oak Rocking Chair provides a unique perspective on life and love, making it an ideal and entertaining addition to family, elementary school, and community library picture book collections for children ages 5-8. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Red Oak Rocking Chair" is also available in a paperback edition (9781489714220, $16.99) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $3.99).

Elmer's Walk
David McKee
Andersen Press
https://www.andersenpress.co.uk
9781541535541, $17.99 HC, $9.99 Kindle, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Elmer's Walk will reach ages 4-9 with a fine picture book story of a colorful patchwork elephant who makes many new discoveries on his walk, but finds the other animals too busy to stop and enjoy them. Kids with good reading skills and read-aloud parents will relish the message in this tale, about taking time to smell the roses and realize the wonders of imagination, contemplating, and leisure time.

Nipper and the Lunchbox
Lucy Dillamore
Child's Play
250 Minot Avenue, Auburn, ME 04210
www.childs-play.com
9781786281807, $16.99 HC; 978-1786281791, $7.99 PB, Ages 3-6, www.amazon.com

Nipper and the Lunchbox tells of pet dog Nipper, who hates being alone all day as his best friend Richard goes to work. But when Richard leaves his lunchbox behind, Nipper decides to find his friend and deliver it, facing many obstacles to success as he develops new talents and faces the unknown world outside his familiar home. A fine story of friendship and perseverance evolves.

Delores Thesaurus
Jessica Lee Hutchings
Flowerpot Press
www.FlowerpotPress.com
9781486714636, $16.99, HC, 32pp, Ages 5-8, www.amazon.com

Delores Thesaurus receives large-size, fun drawings by Hazel Quintanilla and a focus on expanding vocabulary words as it follows Delores in her search through the city for new words to use. There are some words that may challenge vocabulary just within the course of the rhyming story ("Dolores Thesaurus with her pink attache/put on her coat and her purple beret."), and good reading skills will help youngsters enjoy this exciting treasure hunt; but the basics of language usage and expansion are delightfully narrated in an adventure that will keep kids not just reading, but learning new words.

Cook's Cook
Gavin Bishop
Gecko Press
www.geckopress.com
9781776572045, $17.99, HC, 40pp, Ages 8-11, www.amazon.com

Cook's Cook: The Cook Who Cooked for Captain Cook requires good reading skills but provides a lively fictionalized story based on real facts about James Cook in 1768. Ship's cook John Thompson documents shipboard life, Cook's travels, and his recipes (most of which, like Albatross Stew, won't be reproducible at home). Kids who wish a lively survey of what life was really like during these times will find this a colorful, fun exploration, and an easy way of absorbing facts about the times.

The Wall in the Middle of the Book
Jon Agee
Penguin
c/o Penguin Young Readers Group
345 Hudson Street, 15th floor, New York, NY 10014
www.penguin.com/kids
9780525555452, $17.99 HC, $10.99 Kindle, 48pp, Ages 4-8, www.amazon.com

The Wall in the Middle of the Book tells of a young knight who is sure that a wall protects his side of the story from the dangers of the other side of the tale. His fixation with the dangers of the other side and their threat to his world belay a problem happening literally under his own feet in this fun picture book story of fear, wall-building, and understanding which will reach ages 4 and older with a fun story.

What Can You Do with a Toolbox?
Cousins Anthony Carrino and John Colaneri
Paula Wiseman Books
c/o Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
1230 Avenue of the Americas, 4th floor, New York, NY 10020
www.simonandschuster.com/kids
9781534402966, $17.99 HC, $10.99 Kindle, 32pp, Ages 4-8, www.amazon.com

What Can You Do with a Toolbox? receives fun drawings by Maple Lam, who deftly illustrates a picture book survey of basic tools that can be found in a toolbox. The authors, known as The Cousins in other media, are TV stars and builders themselves, and here provide a cross between fiction and nonfiction as it teaches tool basics in the context of children and adults who use them.

Annie Arrives
Adapted by Kallie George
Tundra Books
http://penguinrandomhouse.ca/imprints/tundra-books
9781770499300, $12.99 HC, 978-0735265738, $7.99 PB, 64pp, www.amazon.com

Annie Arrives pairs lovely drawings by Abigail Halpin with George's adaptation of the classic Anne of Green Gables story, offering younger readers who are moving from picture books to chapter books and beyond a fine way of accessing Anne's compelling tale. Ages 6-8 will find this a fine story of Anne's arrival as an orphan to Green Gables, where she cultivates love, a lively imagination, and captures the hearts of everyone around her.

Scholastic
557 Broadway, New York, NY 10012-3999
www.scholastic.com

Two new arrivals are standouts in picture book circles and deserve a place in any picture book lending library seeking memorable, lasting leisure reads. Jane Yolen and Mark Teague's How Do Dinosaurs Learn to Read? (9781338233018, $16.99, HC, 40pp, Ages 3-5) offers a playful approach to the joys of reading that revolves around little dinosaurs who love the written word. But what would a dinosaur do with this book? A rollicking rhyme discusses how dinosaurs might handle a literary challenge. Jeremy Tankard's Sleepy Bird (9781338157857, $16.99 HC, $10.99 Kindle, 32pp, Ages 3-5) tells of a bird who is not ready for bedtime; not at all. Bird thinks it's party time, instead, and he wants to fly and play. As various animals try to help Bird calm down and get ready for bed, kids are treated to a fun, possibly recognizable set of strategies parents may have used to promote their own sleepy time in this whimsical, fun story.

Eerdmans Books for Young Readers
c/o Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
2140 Oak Industrial Drive, NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49505
www.eerdmans.com/youngreaders

Silvia Vecchini's Phone Call With a Fish (9780802855107, $17.00, HC, 48pp, Ages 5-9) tells of a mute boy at school and a classmate who wants him to talk to her. When she goes on a field trip to the science museum, she finds a clue that may help the situation in this fun story, illustrated with simple drawings by Sualzo in a discussion of how peers can draw out shy individuals and help them to feel safe. Giovanna Zoboli and Simona Mulazzani's Felix (9780802855060, $17.00, HC, 32pp, Ages 5-9) is translated by Laura Watkinson and tells of Felix, a cat who looks at a map of the world, faces having only two of his nine lives left, and decides it's time to go to other places to visit the family he's never known. Good reading skills will enhance appreciation of this gentle story of an adventurous cat's explorations of his heritage and very different cats in his family. Both are unusual reads that offer underlying messages kids and parents will recognize and appreciate.

Candlewick Press
99 Dover Street, Somerville, MA 02144
www.candlewick.com

John Burningham's Borka: The Adventures of a Goose With No Feathers (9781536200409, $16.99 HC; 32pp, Ages 3-7) offers a new edition of a book that was the Kate Greenaway medal Winner over fifty years ago, and tells of a baby gosling born without feathers. Mother Mrs. Pumpster is encouraged to knit him a sweater, which only results in teasing from the other geese. Borka is different, alienated, and alone until she embarks on her own adventure and makes discoveries that demonstrate her real abilities. Good reading skills will lend to this detailed story of self-discovery. Jennifer K. Mann's Josie's Lost Tooth (9780763696948, $16.99, HC, 40pp, Ages 5-8) tells of Josie, a young athlete who excels at everything except losing teeth. She's the only kid in her class who still has all her baby teeth, so when she feels one loosening, she's quite excited. When things don't proceed in a predictable manner, Josie faces her biggest challenge in a fun story of friendship and special challenges.


The Bilingual Shelf

Bamboo and Me
Xu Bin, author
Uyan Yahuan, illustrator
Shanghai Press
c/o Tuttle Publishing
364 Innovation Drive, North Clarendon, VT 05759-9436
www.tuttlepublishing.com
9781602204546, $16.95, HC, 42pp, www.amazon.com

Told to children ages 4 to 8 in both English and Chinese, "Bamboo and Me: Exploring Bamboo's Many Uses in Daily Life" is the picture book story of a little boy whose house was surrounded by many bamboo forests and streams. He lived with bamboo all year round. In spring, he ate delicate and delicious bamboo shoots; in summer, he crafted pliant bamboo stalks into baskets and brooms that he used as tools for fishing; in fall, he used mature bamboo to build kites that flew high and far; in winter, pork cooked with bamboo shoots was the celebratory dish for his family's New Year's Eve dinner. Even the special gift he received from his grandfather on New Year's Eve was made of bamboo. Charmingly crafted by author Xu Bin and charmingly illustrated by Uyan Yahuan, "Bamboo and Me" is a tale that will enchant readers of all ages, making it an ideal and unreservedly recommended addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library Bilingual Picture Book collections.

The Amazing Watercolor Fish/El Asombroso Pez Acuarela
Carolyn Dee Flores, author/illustrator
Carmen Tafolla, translator
Pinata Books
c/o Arte Publico Press
4902 Gulf Freeway, Bldg 19, Rm 100, Houston, TX 77204-2004
www.artepublicopress.com
9781558858732, $17.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

A lonely pet fish longs to know what exists in the world beyond her bowl. "I wish I could see over there / Behind the wall, / Behind the chair." She imagines a giant tree, a wooly goat and a purple sea. She wonders if there could be someone out there who looks like her, so she leans close to the glass and hears some fish-like cries! "Hello? Is someone there?" she hears. "Are you a bird? / Are you a bee? Or are you a fish with fins like me?" She realizes there's another fish close by and his name is Mike! When Mike asks what her world is like, the amazing watercolor fish has a great idea. "I ll show Mike what I think could be!" Using watercolors, she paints a picture of a world with trees and swirling rainbows. Every day she paints more, "birds that swim, / ships with wings, / and books that do all sorts of things!" Then Mike uses his paint to illustrate more "than just the water and the door." "The Amazing Watercolor Fish/El Asombroso Pez Acuarela" is fun, bilingual picture book with a lyrical Spanish translation by former Texas Poet Laureate Carmen Tafolla. Children ages 4-8 will love following the progression of Carolyn Dee Flores' gorgeous illustrations from black and white to full color as the fish become friends. "The Amazing Watercolor Fish/El Asombroso Pez Acuarela" is unreservedly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library Bilingual Picture Book Collections.

Tom Max in the Wild West / Tom Max en el viejo oest
Tomas Maximiliano Benavidez, author
Luciano Martinez, illustrator
Lectura Books
www.lecutrabooks.com
9781604480429, $8.95, PB, 24pp

In this delightfully entertaining bilingual (Spanish/English) picture book by the team of author Tomas Maximiliano Benavidez and illustrator Luciano Martinez, children ages 4-10 will encounter Tom Max on his many unforgettable childhood adventures during the last days of the Wild West, including saving his brother, playing with his cousin, hunting for food, and learning many life lessons! Certain to be an immediate and enduringly popular addition to family, preschool, elementary school, and community library bilingual picture book collections, "Tom Max in the Wild West / Tom Max en el viejo oest" is an extraordinary and thoroughly entertaining read from beginning to end.


The World History Shelf

The Silk Roads: A New History of the World
Peter Frankopan, author
Neil Packer, illustrator
Bloomsbury Children's Books
175 Fifth Avenue, 8th floor, New York, NY 10010-7728
www.bloomsburyusa.com
9781408889930, $24.99, HC, 128pp, www.amazon.com

Young readers ages 8 to 12 will enjoy and appreciate "The Silk Roads: A New History of the World", a stunningly original new history in which Peter Frankopan (Professor of Global history at Oxford University) deftly explores the connections made by people, trade, disease, war, religion, adventure, science and technology in an extraordinary volume about how the east married the west with a remarkable voyage at its heart -- the journey along the Silk Roads. From ancient world laws laid down by King Hammurabi and the mighty Persian empire, to terrifying huns, the rise of Europe, two world wars and politics today, "The Silk Roads" moves through time and history sewing together the threads from different peoples, empires and continents into a phenomenal history of the globe. With stories from each and every corner of society, Professor Frankopan's magnificent retelling of his literary triumph "The Silk Roads" for young readers is sumptuously illustrated by the artwork of Neil Packer. "The Silk Roads" will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to family, school, and community library history collections for young readers.

Mary, Queen of Scots: Escape from Lochleven Castle
Theresa Breslin, author
Teresa Martinez, illustrator
Floris Books
www.florisbooks.co.uk
9781782505129, $11.95, PB, 32pp, www.amazon.com

The true story of the daring escape of Mary, Queen of Scots' from the island castle in Loch Leven is well-known throughout Scotland and the world. Now multi-award-winning author Theresa Breslin, who has carefully researched Mary's life, has adapted this famous adventure into a picture book for children ages 4-7. Through stunning illustrations by Teresa Martinez "Mary, Queen of Scots: Escape from Lochleven Castle" is a gripping story that is simply packed from cover to cover with historical detail. Children will feel the tension of Mary's imprisonment and the excitement of her escape plans, gaining insight into this fascinating period of Scottish history. A full and engaging historical tale for children from a fabulous Scottish storyteller, "Mary, Queen of Scots: Escape from Lochleven Castle" is an especially recommended addition to family, preschool, elementary school, and community library historical picture book collections.


The Science Shelf

A Beginner's Guide to Circuits
Oyvind Nydal Dahl
No Starch Press
245 - 8th Street, San Francisco, CO 94103-3910
www.nostarch.com
9781593279042, $17.95, PB, 80pp, www.amazon.com

Oyvind Nydal Dahl built his first circuit at age 14, and has kept building ever since then. He draws upon his years of experience and expertise in the pages of "A Beginner's Guide to Circuits: Nine Simple Projects with Lights, Sounds, and More!" to teach children ages 8-12 how to read circuit diagrams, use a breadboard, connect electrical components without using a hot soldering iron, and build nine simple projects using just a handful of readily available components, like resistors, transistors, capacitors, and other parts. As you build, you'll learn what each component does, how it works, and how to combine components to achieve new and interesting effects. By the end of "A Beginner's Guide to Circuits", kids will be able to invent and build their own electronic creations. While very highly recommended for school and community library collections for young readers, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "A Beginner's Guide to Circuits" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $10.99).

In Focus: Rocks and Fossils
Chris Oxlade, author
Kingfisher Children's Books
38 Maple Street, Chatham, New Jersey 07928
www.kingfisherbooks.com
9780753474266 $17.99 HC
9780753474273, $12.99 PB, 64pp, www.amazon.com

"In Focus: Rocks and Fossils," elementary school students are treated to a fantastic tour of Earth's amazing rocks, mighty mineral, and fantastic fossils (section titles). Complete with dramatic color photographs, sizzling sidebars of pertinent "rocking facts," geological history as recorded in earth's topography, rocks, minerals and fossils, and more, "Rocks and Fossils" comprises a fascinating visually engaging mini-survey of the earth's rocks, mineral, and fossils. Topics touched on include rock characteristics, mineral wealth, fossil formation, and more. Dramatic photos document each topical chapter's unfolding. At the end of Fantastic Fossils, there is a fun and challenging riotous rocks quiz following a list of fossil finders (Gideon Mantell and Mary Anning), and fabulous fossils, enriched by color photos. A final glossary provides definitions and quiz answers finishes this fascinating recourse for students of geology, rocks and fossils of earth.

Something Rotten
Heather L. Montgomery, author
Kevin O'Malley, illustrator
Bloomsbury Children's Books
175 Fifth Avenue, 8th floor, New York, NY 10010-7728
www.bloomsburyusa.com
9781681199009, $16.99, HC, 176pp, www.amazon.com

When Heather L. Montgomery sees a rattlesnake flattened on the side of the road, her first instinct is to pick it up and dissect it -- she's always wanted to see how a snake's fangs retract when they close their mouths, and it's not exactly safe to poke around in a live reptile's mouth. A wildlife researcher with a special penchant for the animals that litter the roadways, Heather isn't satisfied with dissecting just one snake. Her fascination with roadkill sets her off on a journey from her own backyard and the roadways of the American South to scientists and kids in labs and homes across the globe. From biologists who use the corpses of Tasmanian devils to investigate cures for a contagious cancer, to a scientist who discovered a whole new species of bird from a single wing left behind, to a boy rebuilding animal bodies from the bones up, to a restaurant that serves up animal remnants, Heather discovers that death is just the beginning for these creatures. This engaging narrative nonfiction is an eye-opening and irreverent look at the dead and dying animals that we pass by without a second thought -- as well as a fascinating insight to the scientific research process. A unique, deftly written, and informative book that will fascinate (and perhaps inspire) children ages 9-11, "Something Rotten: A Fresh Look at Roadkill" is very highly recommended for school and community library collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Something Rotten" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $11.13).


The Coloring Book Shelf

Alex and Amy's Great Adventures
Tammy Brown
Waldorf Publishing
2140 Hall Johnson Road 102-345, Grapevine, TX 76051
www.waldorfpublishing.com
9781642040357, $8.99, PB, 40pp, www.amazon.com

In Tammy Brown's coloring book, "Alex and Amy's Great Adventures", children ages 5-10 can come along with Alex and Amy the brother and sister duo, while they experience adventures both great and small. Join them as they play their favorite games, swim at the local pool, and play in the creek. Explore along the way as they visit Grandma and Grandpa on the farm and learn to milk a cow, climb the bluff, and feed the chickens. The adventures never end when Alex and Amy are together and looking for fun, making this coloring book an ideal and highly choice for families of young children.


The Activity Shelf

Junk Drawer Geometry
Bobby Mercer
Chicago Review Press
814 North Franklin Street, Chicago, IL 60610
www.chicagoreviewpress.com
9780912777795 $14.99 pbk / $9.87 Kindle amazon.com

Junk Drawer Geometry: 50 Awesome Activities That Don't Cost a Thing features fifty hands-on, educational projects for geometry learners ages nine to ninety. Each activity is illustrated with black-and-white photographs. From Mobius strips made out of index cards, to a Pythagorea theorem modeled with cheese crackers and much more, Junk Drawer Geometry is a great way to make learning math fun! Highly recommended especially for public and school library collections, and snowed-in school days.


The Graphic Novel Shelf

Gillbert: The Little Merman
Art Baltazar
Papercutz
160 Broadway, Suite 700E, New York, NY 10038
www.papercutz.com
9781545801451 $9.99 pbk / $2.99 Kindle amazon.com

Gillbert: The Little Merman is a full-color graphic novel for children and young adults about a chipper, curious aquatic mer-youth named Gillbert. Gillbet discovers a mysterious message in a bottle, meets an adventurous mermaid named Anne Phibian, and encounters festivities under the sea. Then fiery aliens invade Earth and its oceans! Charming and captivating, Gillbert: The Little Merman is a delightful odyssey and a great way to encourage young people to read. Highly recommended, especially for public and school library children's graphic novel collections.

Baeoh and the Bully
Master Taekwon Lee, author
Ethen Beavers, illustrator
Rodale Kids
c/o Random House Children's Books
1745 Broadway, 10-1, New York, NY 10019
www.randomhouse.com/kids
9781623369477, $14.99, HC, 108pp, www.amazon.com

With Buddy Day right around the corner, the Team Taekwondo dojo is buzzing with excitement. There's one student, however, who's not so excited. Bringing a buddy to class would normally be easy for the confident and cool Baeoh. But with new bullies in his life who won't leave him alone, Baeoh doesn't feel much like a buddy. Worse yet, he may be turning into a bully himself. In order to overcome his bullies, Baeoh must gather support from his friends and learn about the important taekwondo principle of respect. In "Baeoh and the Bully", children ages 6-9 will follow a new adventure of Team Taekwondo members. Presented in a graphic novel format, "Baeoh and the Bully" is enthusiastically recommended for family, elementary school, and community library collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Baeoh and the Bully" is also available in a paperback edition (9781623369453, $9.99) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $7.99).

Geronimo Stilton Reporter #1: Operation: Shufongfong
Vincent Bonjour, author
Geronimo Stilton, author
Pier Di Gia, illustrator
Papercutz
160 Broadway, Suite 700E, New York, NY 10038
www.papercutz.com
9781629918716, $9.99, HC, 56pp, www.amazon.com

In "Operation: Shufongfong", Geronimo Stilton is back in new comic stories based on the animated series, now airing on Netflix. The famous Prince Nogouda pays a visit to New Mouse City and ace reporter Geronimo Stilton has an exclusive interview. Meanwhile, at the Mouse Museum, the rare breed of Shufongfong lizards have been kidnapped! Could like Prince and his kingdom in the Bandel jungle have anything to do with this? Geronimo, Thea, Trap, and Benjamin are on the case! An impressively entertaining and deftly crafted graphic novel for young readers ages 8-12 that is very highly recommended for school and community library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Geronimo Stilton Reporter #1: Operation: Shufongfong" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $6.74).


The Audiobook Shelf

Max Einstein: The Genius Experiment
James Patterson and Chris Grabenstein, authors
Read by Andrea Emmes
Hachette Audio
1290 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10104
www.HachetteAudio.com
9781549170225 $23.00 amazon.com

Max Einstein: The Genius Experiment is an audiobook for young adults about an exceptionally bright 12-year-old girl. Max Einstein is attending college at a young age, likes to play speed chess in the park, and creates inventions to help the homeless. Then she recruited by a mysterious organization, which seeks to harness the genius of her and others like her around the world in order to tackle humanity's toughest problems. But a shadowy outfit known as the Corporation also has a greedy interest in her brilliance! Upbeat, tongue-in-cheek, and just plain fun, Max Einstein: The Genius Experiment is highly recommended for personal and public library YA audiobook collections. 5 CDs, 5.5 hours.

I'm From the Sun
Morgan Taylor
http://gustaferyellowgold.com
Audible Studios
audible.com/gustafer
9781721357253 $19.99 amazon.com

Available exclusively from Audible, I'm From the Sun is a musical coming-of-age story especially for young adults, from two-time Grammy nominated songwriter and cartoonist Morgan Taylor. The story follows the life of young alien Gustafer Yellowgold on the Sun, featuring 16 sensational songs. Lively and heartwarming, I'm From the Sun is a delightful adventure the whole family can enjoy together, and highly recommended for family and public library audiobook collections. It should be noted that I'm From the Sun is available in physical CD, MP3 CD, and digital audio formats.


The Music CD Shelf

Monster's Ball
Michael & the Rockness Monsters
michaelandtherocknessmonsters.com
Privately Published
rocknessmusic.com
$TBA CD / $9.49 MP3 amazon.com

Monster's Ball is the third family-friendly release form award-winning band Rockness Music. Lively, energetic, and perfect for celebrating children's parties, Monster's Ball is a rock-n-roll blast with an extra turn of humor, inspiring smiles from the young and the old alike! The tracks are "Introduction (Marshmallow Overture)", "Smile", "Party Train", "People Places Dancing", "Woodpecker", "A Fish Named Dog", "Mona Lisa", "Growing Bigger", "Robot Song", "Truck Day", "When I'm Jumpin'", "Beautiful Day", and "Les Lumieres De Paris".

Nothing Is Impossible
The Story Pirates
storypirates.com
Privately Published
$TBA CD / $8.99 MP3 amazon.com

Nothing Is Impossible is a children's music album that taps deep into the imagination. All twelve songs are based on the story ideas submitted by young people. Charming, irreverent, and playful, Nothing Is Impossible is just plain fun for playtime, party time, or anytime! The tracks are "Fart Out Loud Day", "Frank The Monster Who Wasn't Scary", "The Guy", "Riding a Seagull Was Good", "Star", "Nothing Is Impossible", "In the Car", "How Penguin Office Became a Thing", "All 8 Unicorns", "Pizza Revenge", "Fred the Carrot", and "What the World Was Called Before Us".

Rock & Rhyme
Mr. Jon & Friends
www.mrjonmusic.com
Privately Published
$15.00 CD / $15.00 digital amazon.com

Parents' Choice Award-winning "kindie" band Mr. Jon & Friends present their third album Rock & Rhyme, a rollicking collection of original children's music peppered with sing-along songs, counting songs, dancing songs, storytelling songs, lullabies, and more. The playful, attention- grabbing rhythms make Rock & Rhyme a delight for children's celebrations or everyday playtime. Highly recommended! The tracks are "Rock & Rhyme", "Dance Party", "Clap Your Hands", "Play My Drum", "Tortoise and the Hare", "Going on a Bear Hunt", "Old MacDonald", "Dragonfly", "Clean Up", "Let's Move to Some Music", "Animal Parade", "Yellow Tube", "Alphabet Song", "Ants in My Pants", "Hermit Crab Going on a Walk", "Brush Your Teeth" (by Raffi, used with permission), "Red Balloon", "Summer Rain", "My Little One", and "George is Asleep". 47 min.


The Christian Shelf

St. Francis and the Animals
Phil Gallery, author
Sibyl Mackenzie, illustrator
Paraclete Press
PO Box 1568, Orleans, MA 02653
www.paracletepress.com
9781612619736, $17.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

A deftly crafted story by Phil Gallery that is beautifully illustrated throughout by Sibyl Mackenzie, "St. Francis and the Animals" finds Mother Bird telling her son stories of St. Francis of Assisi. If the animal kingdom can understand the life and teachings of the world's most famous saint, so can children ages 7 to 12, who will be delighted by this simple and simply beautiful picture book. "St. Francis and the Animals" is especially and unreservedly recommended for family, Sunday School, elementary school, and community library picture book collections for young readers.

My Year with the Saints for Kids
Peter Celano, compiler
Paraclete Press
PO Box 1568, Orleans, MA 02653
www.paracletepress.com
9781640601673, $14.99, PB, 160pp, www.amazon.com

Pope Francis recently shared a prayer with the world: "May the Lord grant us all the hope of being saints." That prayer most especially includes the children. Any young Catholic can become a saint by opening their heart and letting God help them. Deftly compiled by Peter Celano, "My Year with the Saints for Kids" introduces Catholic children to a saint every day - saints who people like themselves who made the choice to love Jesus and give their lives to him. These stories, prayers, and suggestions for becoming holy are designed with a child's needs and their own life in mind. Once a child gets underway toward sainthood, they should go ahead and reveal these examples and teachings to the adults around them too! Inspired and inspiring, "My Year with the Saints for Kids" is unreservedly recommended for all members of the Catholic community -- both the young and the young at heart!

God Made Me And You
Shai Linne, author
Trish Mahoney, illustrator
New Growth Press
https://newgrowthpress.com
9781948130134, $15.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

"God Made Me And You: Celebrating God's Design for Ethnic Diversity" by the team of author Shai Linne and illustrator Trish Mahoney is a beautifully illustrated children's book invites kids ages 8-12 to explore God's design for ethnic diversity and challenges both parents and children to learn and live out counter-cultural, biblical views, fostering a lifelong celebration of diversity for the glory of God. Because Scripture teaches that ethnic diversity is not something that should be tolerated but rather enthusiastically embraced, Christian hip hop artist Shai Linne helps children, parents, and caregivers to celebrate this biblical truth through a lyrical, rhyming style and colorful illustrations. The result is an approachable guide for families to begin conversations about cultivating a God's perspective on ethnic diversity, confronting the sins of racism, bigotry, and ethnic pride. Inspired and inspiring, "God Made Me And You" is wholeheartedly recommended for family, Sunday School, and community library picture book collections.

When God Gave Us Words
Sandy Eisenberg Sasso, author
Darcy Day Zoells, illustrator
Flyaway Books
www.flyawaybooks.com
9781947888012, $16.00, HC, 40pp, www.amazon.com

Beautifully illustrated by Darcy Day Zoells, "When God Gave Us Words" by Sandy Eisenberg Sasso tells a creative tale about the origin of words, and the power of language. Inside this innovative children's picture book for children ages 3-8, God gives the power of words to humankind. At first God and the angels are pleased with how people use words, but over time they start to use words to make curses, lies, and threats. The angels beg God to take back the gift of language, and just as God is about to take it back, new beautiful words begin to fill the air. Unique and thoroughly 'kid friendly' in its presentation, "When God Gave Us Words"is an ideal and unreservedly recommended addition to family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library collections.

God Counts
Ireni Sun
New Growth Press
www.newgrowthpress.com
9781945270796, $15.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

"God Counts: Numbers in His Word and His World" by Ireni Sun is playful children's book that deftly serves as a beginner's theology book for young readers who love numbers and patterns as it introduces the Trinity, the God of order, the holiness of God, the problem of sin, the rescue and love of Jesus, and much more. Elementary school age children who love to count will be filled with wonder, leading them to understand deeper truths about God, themselves, and the world around them. Inspired and inspiring, "God Counts" is unreservedly recommended for family, Sunday School, elementary school, and community library collections.


The Buddhism Shelf

Guan Yin: The Buddha's Helper
Bhikshuni Jin Rou, author
Terri Nicholson, author
Bhikshuni Heng Ching, illustrator
Buddhist Text Translation Society
4951 Bodhi Way, Ukiah, CA 95482
www.buddhisttexts.org
9781642170214, $10.00, HC, 40pp, www.amazon.com

Guan Yin (aka Kwan Yin) is one of the most well-known and beloved saints of East Asia. She is the Buddha's helper and appears in many sacred Buddhist texts, including the Lotus Sutra. Guan Yin uses her magic willow branch to sprinkle sweet dew and rescue people from distress. She helps people overcome fear, sadness, and pain. Guan Yin has different names in different countries, but she is the same merciful bodhisattva (enlightened being) who brings hope to all beings everywhere. Expertly re-told from the Lotus Sutra, "Guan Yin: The Buddha's Helper" is beautifully illustrated throughout and unreservedly recommended for family, school, and community library Buddhism picture book collections for children.


The Fiction Shelf

Explorer Academy: The Nebula Secret
Trudi Truett
Under The Stars
c/o National Geographic Press
101 West 104th Street, Suite 8, New York, NY 10025
www.nationalgeographic.com
9781426331596, $16.99, HC, 208pp, www.amazon.com

Cruz leaves his tranquil home in Hawaii to join 23 talented kids from around the globe to train at the Explorer Academy with the world's leading scientists to become the next generation of great explorers. But for Cruz, there's more at stake. No sooner has he arrived at the Academy than he discovers that his family has a mysterious past with the organization that could jeopardize his future. In the midst of code breaking and cool classes, new friends and augmented reality expeditions, Cruz must tackle the biggest question of all: Who is out to get him, and why? In addition to being an inherently engaging and deftly crafted novel, young readers ages 8-12 will specially appreciate how author Trudi Truett has embedded in "Explorer Academy: The Nebula Secret" a series of puzzles and codes in the story. While unreservedly recommended for school and community library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Explorer Academy: The Nebula Secret" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

We Were Beautiful
Heather Hepler
Blink
c/o HarperCollins
10 East 53rd Street, New York, NY 10022
www.harpercollinschildrens.com
9780310766438, $12.99, PB, 304pp, www.amazon.com

It's been a year since fifteen-year-old Mia Hopkins was in the car crash that killed her older sister and left her terribly scarred. The doctors tell her she was lucky to survive. Her therapist says it will take time to heal. The police reports claim there were trace amounts of alcohol in her bloodstream. But no matter how much she tries to reconstruct the events of that fateful night, Mia's memory is spotty at best. She's left with accusations, rumors, and guilt so powerful it could consume her. As the rest of Mia's family struggles with their own grief, Mia is sent to New York City to spend the summer with a grandmother she's never met. All Mia wants to do is hide from the world, but instead she's stuck with a summer job in the bustling kitchens of the cafe down the street. There she meets Fig who takes Mia under her wing. As Mia gets to know Fig and her friends (including Cooper, the artistic boy who is always on Mia's mind) she realizes that she's not the only one with a painful past. Over the summer, Mia begins to learn that redemption isn't as impossible as she once thought, but her scars inside run deep and aren't nearly so simple to heal -- especially when Mia finally pieces together her memories of the night Rachel died. A deftly crafted novel that by an author with a genuine talent for hold her reader's rapt attention from beginning to end, "We Were Beautiful" by Heather Hepler is unreservedly recommended for school and community library YA Fiction collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "We Were Beautiful" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $7.99).

Forgetting the Dreamtime
Gregory Victor Loewen
Austin MacAuley Publishers
https://www.austinmacauley.com
9781788784306, $28.95, HC, 266pp, www.amazon.com

Sixteen-year-old Kristen has had quite enough of following her evangelical parents' copious rules. But although up to her neck in both disobedience and discipline, she, nevertheless, suddenly finds herself at the heart of a mystery more profound than anything her willful imagination could have conjured. A challenge so deep that it will affect not only her own fate, but that of the species itself. And, ironically, it will require all of the power of her remaining faith in attempting to overcome it. A deftly scripted, unfailing engaging, coming-of-age story, "Forgetting the Dreamtime" showcases novelist Gregory Victor Loewen's genuine flair for originality, narrative storytelling, and developing memorable characters. While especially and unreservedly for highschool and community library YA Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Forgetting the Dreamtime" is also available in a paperback edition (9781788784290, $14.95) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $4.51).

The Ghost Road
Charis Cotter
Tundra Books
http://penguinrandomhouse.ca/imprints/tundra-books
9781101918890, $16.99 HC, $9.99 Kindle, 368pp, www.amazon.com

Ruth is spending the summer with family she's never met in Newfoundland rather than traveling with her father; but despite having Toronto roots, she finds the area to be very different culturally than the city she knows so well. People are friendly but quite superstitious, and when Ruth and her cousin Ruby form a bond despite Ruby's beliefs, they both become involved in a long-standing spooky family mystery. Kids ages 9-12 who love a good ghost story will relish this engrossing tale of courage and supernatural encounters.

The Third Mushroom: Believe in the Unexpected
Jennifer L. Holm
Random House
c/o Random House Children's Books
1745 Broadway, 10-1, New York, NY 10019
www.randomhouse.com/kids
9781524719807, $16.99 HC, $9.99 Kindle, 240pp, Ages 8-12, www.amazon.com

The Third Mushroom: Believe in the Unexpected provides a sequel to The Fourteenth Goldfish and will best be enjoyed by fans of the first book who will find this an intriguing follow-up. Ellie's grandfather Melvin is a famous scientist inhabiting the body of a teenage boy. Perhaps there's an unfair advantage when the two join forces for the county science fair with an experiment that promises to prove revolutionary, but when eternal youth is on the table, anything can happen. A fun story of scientific conundrums and a quest for happiness makes for an involving tale.

The Infamous Ratsos: Project Fluffy
Kara Lareau
Candlewick Press
99 Dover Street, Somerville, MA 02144
www.candlewick.com
9781536200058, $14.99 HC, $9.99 Kindle, 96pp, Ages 5-8, www.amazon.com

The Infamous Ratsos: Project Fluffy is illustrated by Matt Myers and offers grades 3-5 a fine elementary-level chapter book read about Chuck Wood, who has th nerve to ask Louie Ratso for help. Chuck likes his friend Fluffy Rabbitski, and wants Louie's help to get Fluffy's attention. But Fluffy only wants to dig in her garden. A fun story of a twisted triangle emerges in this delightful tale of rats and romance.

Edison Beaker Creature Seeker: the Night Door
Frank Cammuso
Viking
c/o Penguin Young Readers Group
345 Hudson Street, 15th floor, New York, NY 10014
http://us.penguingroup.com
9780425291924, $15.99 HC, 9780425291931, $10.99 PB, $9.99 Kindle, 160pp

Edison Beaker Creature Seeker: the Night Door presents a full-color graphic novel for young readers ages 8-12 revolving around Edison Beaker, whose family is either busy, annoying, or involved in the family pest-control company that Edison could care less about. Creature Seekers is involved in large-size, frightening pest removals, and Uncle Earl has received an emergency call that involves Edison and his sister Tesla, making them unexpected accomplices in the business. A fun, zany tale about monsters and might emerges which will prove comic and graphic novel readers with a story that is hard to put down.

Scholastic, Inc.
557 Broadway, New York, NY 10012-3999
www.scholastic.com

Two novels will appeal to young adult readers with involving stories that are different portals to understanding. Kirby Larson's Code Word Courage (9780545840750, $16.99 HC, $9.99 Kindle, 256pp, Ages 8-12) weaves a fascinating story of a World War II Navajo Code Talker, a lonely girl, and a stray dog who brings them together. Billie has faced the loss of her parents already; and more loss is on the way as her big brother heads off to war. Her final weekend with him is married when Leo brings home a fellow Marine from boot camp, but Danny bring with him an injured stay dog, and Billie becomes involved in the war effort on a scale she'd never imagined despite her worries that Leo and Denny won't make it home. A powerful saga of love and family emerges. Justina Chen's Lovely, Dark, and Deep (9781338134063, $18.99 HC, $11.99 Kindle, 352pp, Ages 12-18) tells of Viola, who develops a sudden sensitively to sunlight and finds herself sheltered away from all light, including that from windows and her own cell phone screen. Her evolving romance with Josh changes everything, especially when he pushes her to take the kind of risks that might kill her. An involving story of health challenges, love, and coping mechanisms creates a read that is different and hard to put down.


The Mystery/Suspense Shelf

Spies
Brian Gallagher
O'Brien Press
c/o Dufour Editions, Inc.
PO Box 7, 124 Byers Road, Chester Springs, PA 19425-0007
www.dufoureditions.com
9781847179807, $15.00, PB, 256pp, www.amazon.com

Rebel leader Michael Collins engages in a cut-throat secret war with British Intelligence: and Johnny, Ireland's youngest spy at only fourteen years of age, finds himself at the center of the action. In a Dublin full of gunmen, soldiers, police informers and the dreaded Black and Tans, Johnny has to watch his every move. But it's hard to turn his back on the past, especially on his friendships with Alice Goodman, and with Stella Radcliffe, the daughter of a British officer, who risked her own life to save his. As the War of Independence grows more lethal, the three friends must decide where their loyalties lie. Then a secret from Johnny's past changes everything. A thriller of a read from first page to last, "Spies: Ireland's War of Independence. United friends ... divided loyalties" by Brian Gallagher is a very highly recommended novel for young readers ages 9 to 14. While especially recommended for school and community library General Fiction collections, it should be noted that "Spies" is also available for personal reading lists in a digital book format (Kindle, $7.49).

The Math Kids: The Prime-Time Burglars
David Cole
Common Deer Press
https://www.commondeerpress.com
9781988761220, $7.99, PB, 120pp, www.amazon.com

Jordan and Justin are best friends and the only two kids in their class's advanced math group. So it isn't until Stephanie Lewis marches into their classroom that they meet someone who's as good with numbers as they are. Their shared interest in math quickly draws them together, and the three soon form 'The Math Kids'. Unfortunately, life as math club kids isn't always easy. In addition to extra homework, the three friends have two new problems. First, a string of mysterious burglaries has the whole neighborhood on edge, including their parents. Then, they manage to earn unwanted attention from Robbie, the class bully. Luckily, Jordan, Justin, and Stephanie soon learn that their new club may give them the skills they need to solve both problems. Exceptionally well written for children ages 8 to 14, "The Math Kids: The Prime-Time Burglars" by writer and math teacher David Cole is especially and unreservedly recommended for elementary school and community library collections for young readers. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Math Kids: The Prime-Time Burglars" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $5.99).


The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

Wings of Fire: Darkness of Dragons
Tui T. Sutherland
Scholastic
557 Broadway, New York, NY 10012-3999
9780545685481 $7.99 www.scholastic.com

Now available in a trade paperback edition, Wings of Fire: Darkness of Dragons is the latest novel in the "Wings of Fire" series of epic fantasies set in Pyrrhia, a world dominated by different species of intelligent dragons, each with their own culture, their own specializations - and their own talents for war. The ruthless Darkstalker poses a threat to all other dragons, yet one clever dragon, Qibli, has a plan to stop Darkstalker with an all-powerful scroll holding the potential to rewrite history. But the power to change time itself is a dangerous one; could Qibli's plan bring the destruction of all realms, instead of their salvation? Darkness of Dragons makes an excellent jumping-on point to this sweeping adventure, sure to intrigue dragon fans of all ages. Highly recommended, especially for school and library YA fantasy collections.


The Biography Shelf

The Bluest of Blues
Fiona Robinson
Abrams Books for Young Readers
c/o Harry N. Abrams, Inc.
115 West 18th Street, 6th floor, New York, NY 10011
www.abramsbooks.com
9781419725517, $17.99, HC, 48pp, www.amazon.com

Written and illustrated by Fiona Robinson, The Bluest of Blues: Anna Atkins and the First Book of Photographs" is a simply gorgeous picture book biography of botanist and photographer Anna Atkins who was the first person to ever publish a book of photography. After losing her mother very early in life, Anna Atkins (1799 - 1871) was raised by her loving father. He gave her a scientific education, which was highly unusual for women and girls in the early 19th century. Fascinated with the plant life around her, Anna became a botanist. She recorded all her findings in detailed illustrations and engravings, until the invention of cyanotype photography in 1842. Anna used this new technology in order to catalogue plant specimens -- a true marriage of science and art. In 1843, Anna published the book 'Photographs of British Algae: Cyanotype Impressions' with handwritten text and cyanotype photographs. It is considered the first book of photographs ever published. Weaving together histories of women, science, and art, "The Bluest of Blues" will inspire young readers ages 6 - 9 to embark on their own journeys of discovery and creativity, making it an ideal and very special addition to family, elementary school, and community library collections for children.

No Small Potatoes
Tonya Bolden, author
Don Tate, illustrator
Knopf
c/o Random House Children's Books
1745 Broadway, 10-1, New York, NY 10019
www.randomhouse.com/kids
9780385752763, $17.99, HC, 40pp, www.amazon.com

Junius G. Groves came from humble beginnings in the Bluegrass State. Born in Kentucky into slavery, freedom came when he was still a young man and he intended to make a name for himself. Along with thousands of other African Americans who migrated from the South, Junius walked west and stopped in Kansas. Working for a pittance on a small potato farm was no reason to feel sorry for himself, especially when he's made foreman. But Junius did dream of owning his own farm, so he did the next best thing. He rented the land and worked hard! As he built his empire, he also built a family, and he built them both on tons and tons and tons of potatoes. He never quit working hard, even as the naysayers doubted him, and soon he was declared Potato King of the World and had five hundred acres and a castle to call his own. From award winning author Tonya Bolden and talented illustrator Don Tate, "No Small Potatoes: Junius G. Groves and His Kingdom in Kansas" is an inspiring story of perseverance that reminds children ages 4-8 that no matter where you begin, as long as you work hard, your creation can never be called 'small potatoes'. While very highly recommended for family, daycare center, preschool, elementary school, and community library collections, it should be noted that "No Small Potatoes: Junius G. Groves and His Kingdom in Kansas" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).


The Environmental Shelf

Little Katie Explores the Coral Reefs
Carmela Dutra, author/illustrator
Privately Published
www.carmeladutra.com
9781387810512, $ 9.95, PB, $14.80, www.amazon.com

Written and illustrated by a multiple award- winning author /artist, "Little Katie Explores the Coral Reefs" takes young readers on a fascinating tour of "the rainforests of the sea," or the magical coral reefs of the oceans. Katie is a spunky, knowledgeable guide assisted by her loveable puppy, Smudge. First, the snorkeling duo explore a fringing reef, often found in shallow clear water along shorelines of continents and islands. Other reefs are called barrier reefs, farther offshore than fringing reefs, and atolls, a series of low coral islands made of volcanic remains. Katie knows that the largest reef in the world is the Great Barrier Reef in Australia, which is a longer than 1200 miles and can be seen from outer space. Katie and Smudge wear snorkels and hold their breath before diving where they saw wonderful rainbow colored fish and plants. Katie tells Smudge over 25 percent of all life in the ocean is found in coral reefs. She compares the coral reef to a giant apartment building in New York City, with all the coral polyps living together in each apartment. Smudge found the clownfish and sea anemone, two species that work together in a symbiotic ocean partnership. Colorful coral reefs contain sea urchins, sponges, sea stars, fish, sharks, octopuses, and many more living marine creatures. Katie was astounded to sight a reef octopus, a highly intelligent invertebrate who is a master of disguise, changing color for camouflage from one moment to the next. When Katie and Smudge surfaced, they found themselves in a small backyard pool, returning from an imaginary trip to the coral reef. Katie's mother tells her that coral reefs are of central importance to the earth, playing roles in recycling carbon dioxide, protecting land from harsh weather and providing homes to millions of sea animals. Katie also learns that she can help protect coral reefs by not pouring bad things down drains and by recycling. Charming hand colored illustrations depict Katie on her imaginary coral reef tour and safe in her mother's lap returning to her backyard pool with Smudge. Winner of the Readers Favorite Five Star Review silver seal, "Little Katie Explores the Coral Reefs" is a first rate example of STEM approved entertainment and education for children in elementary grades.


Books in Series

Do Kids Have Too Much to Do?
Jennifer Joline Anderson, author
Norwood House Press
P.O. Box 316598, Chicago, IL 60631
www.norwoodhousepress.com
9781599539331 $22.70 Library Binding, $13.26 PB, 48pp, www.amazon.com

"Do Kids Have Too Much to Do?" is a nonjudgmental analysis of data about the title topic which examines three main questions: Do kids have too much homework? Are kids too busy with sports? Do kids need more free time? Each of four chapters ends with a section called Let's Look at the Opinions which discusses chief points to remember when arriving at a conclusion. At the book's end, students are invited to write their opinions, following a guideline of six outlined steps in this process. like all the other titles of this series, "Do Kids Have Too Much to Do?" teaches students (ages7-8 and up) to explore issues by weighing both sides of an issue, building critical think skills and learning opinion writing skills. Color photographs and clearly written narrative with key words and concepts in bold print and helpful sidebars all collaborate to help build student's critical thinking skills. This includes learning the difference between facts and opinions, and that in order to be convincing, opinions need supporting data or facts to back them up. After presenting convincing arguments both in favor of and against each of the three topic questions in four chapters, readers are encouraged and challenged to write what they think, following a six step suggested outline: Step one is "Choose what to write about." Step two is "Find out more." Step three is "State your opinion." Step four is "Give reasons." Step five is "Support your reasons." Finally, Step six is "Write the ending." "Do Kids Have Too Much to Do?" is completed by a glossary, bibliography, source notes, and index. As part of the Shape Your Opinion series, this title offers readers an opportunity to sift ideas and knowledge and arrive at a supported opinion that they can successfully communicate. Other titles in the Shape Your Opinion series that are also highly recommended include the following: "Should Kids Get allowance? (9781599539348)," by Janie Havemeyer, "Do Kids Need Year-Round School? (9781599539317)," by Carolyn Williams-Noren, "Should Kids Wear School Uniforms? (781599539294)," by Janie Havemeyer, "Should Kids Use Social Media? (9781599539300)," by Jennifer Joline Anderson, and "Do Kids Need Video Game Ratings? (9781599539324)," by Carolyn Williams-Noren.

Bug Brother
Peter Johnson, author
Mike Gordon, illustrator
Catnip Publishing
c/o Kane Miller / EDC Publishing
4901 Morena Blvd, Suite 213, San Diego, CA 92117
www.kanemiller.com
9781846470875, $4.99, PB, 112pp, www.amazon.com

When Jamie finds an old cape covered in gold stars, he pretends it's magic and can grant wishes. One day Jamie's little brother, Harry, is really bugging him and Jamie wishes the cape would turn harry into a bluebottle fly -- suddenly there is no more pretending! A lively little story for young readers ages 7-9, Peter Johnson's "Bug Brother" is a delightful blend of adventure, imagination, and humor that is unreservedly recommended for family, elementary school, and community library collections. Also very highly recommended by Peter Johnson's 'Brother' series are "Invisible Brother" (9781610677431, $4.99, PB); "Detective Brother" (9781610677448, $4.99, PB); and "Pirate Brother" (9781610677455, $4.99, PB).

What's Life Like with a Single Parent?
Patty Swinton, author
PowerKids Press
www.powerkidspress.com
c/o Rosen Publishing
29 East 21st Street, New York, NY10010
www.rosenpub.com
9781508167181, $24.60 Library Binding, $4.33 PB, 24pp, www.amazon.com

"What's Life Like with a Single Parent?" is a book about kids who experience family life and love with one parent. Written for children age 6 and up, this important text from the Help Me Understand series explains many unique features of growing up in a single parent family. Most important of all is the idea that single parent families can provide strong support and loving care just like other families. The extra challenges faced by single parents are described, and kids are encouraged to help out with chores at home because their single parent has many extra responsibilities to face. Asking questions about an absent parent is natural, and if the child's single parent is uncomfortable answering these questions, other resources are suggested. Color photographs of many different single parent families are included, and helpful green shaded sidebars offer special tips for dealing with emotions and feelings about single parents and their adult friends, or other related issues. Although being a single parent family is challenging, it is important to remember that there are many different kinds of families, all of which are capable of love and support and closeness. At the end a glossary explains many special terms used in the text. "What's Life Like with a single Parent?" is a great resource for kids who are adjusting to their lives in a single parent family. The Help Me Understand series also contains six other highly recommended titles about children's family life experiences: "What Happens at a Funeral?," "What Happens When My Parent Dies?," What Happens When My Parent Is in Jail?," "What Happens When My Parents Get Divorced?," and "What's Life Like in Foster Care?."

Net Neutrality
Natalie Hyde, author
Crabtree Publishing Company
PMB 59051, 350 Fifth Avenue, 59th Floor, New York, NY 10118
www.crabtreebooks.com
9780778749684 $31.32 HC, $7.38 PB, 48pp, www.amazon.com

"Net Neutrality" is a six chapter examination of the issues, definition, and status of net neutrality in the United States in 2018 and other countries. Students age 10 and older will be intrigued by this title of the Get Informed - Stay Informed series. Useful information is cleverly cataloged and presented with special symbols/icons in boxes indicating sidebar information regarding questions to ask, the central issues, and what's at stake. Acronyms such as ISP (Internet Service Providers) are defined and explained, and handy color coded sidebars highlight additional data as needed. Six chapters cover For or Against Net Neutrality, How to Get Informed, What is Net Neutrality?, Where Things Stand, and Keeping Up to Date. A glossary, source notes, and bibliography round out this exciting topical title prompting students to take part in the ongoing debate about the values and setbacks of net neutrality in today's world. Other titles in this series that are also highly recommended include the following: "Opioid Crisis" (9780778749691) by Natalie Hyde, "Climate Change" (9780778749592) by Heather C. Hudak, and "#MeToo Movement" (9780778749608) by Heather C. Hudak.

Australia
Mary Lindeen, author
The Child's World
1980 Lookout Drive, Mankato, MN 56003
www.childsworld.com
9781503824966 $27.07, Library Binding, 24pp.

"Australia" is a title from the Continent of the World series filled with maps, color photographs, facts and information about Australia, the smallest continent of the seven on the planet, and the only continent which is also a country. Most of Australia is flat dry desert and grassland, called the outback, a less populated region. Originally the home of the Aborigines, first humans who dwelt in Australia, the outback is presently home to cattle and sheep and ranchers, along with Aborigines and other settlers. Most of Australia's population live in cities near the coastline, such as Sydney, home to 5 million. Australia has many famous natural features, including the Great Barrier Reef, largest coral reef in the world, the great red rock known as Uluru or Ayers Rock, with caves harboring Aboriginal wall paintings, and many unique animals known only in Australia (koalas, platypus, kangaroos, and more). other manmade features and attractions such as Flinders Street Railroad Station are in Australia. "Australia" is simply narrated for students age 5-8 to read, and is completed by a glossary and resource section including suggested book titles and web sites about Australia. "Australia" is an excellent resource for young students of world geography, inviting them to investigate further many of the mysteries of this down under continent. Also highly recommended are the following titles from the Continents of the World series: "Antarctica" (97815038249420); "Asia" (9781503824959); "Europe" (9781503824973); "North America" (9781503824980), "South America" (9781503824997); and "Africa" (97815038249350), all by Mary Linden.


The Story Monsters Ink Shelf

www.storymonsters.com


Story Monsters LLC is dedicated to helping authors of all genres strive for excellence through our marketing and publicity services, Dragonfly Book Awards contests, Story Monsters Approved! awards program, opportunities for connecting with schools, and the award-winning Story Monsters Ink(R) magazine.

Decked Out for Christmas
Ethan Long
Abrams
195 Broadway, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10007
www.abramsyoungreaders.com
9781419723056, $9.99, Board Book, 20pp, Ages 2-4, www.amazon.com

Dr. Dawn Menge
Reviewer

It's Christmas time and Santa's little mice helpers are packing his sleigh. This brightly illustrated book will keep the young readers engaged. Each page is a new item that they are packing into Santa's sleigh. They make candy cane skis and the star is made of cheese. Don't forget the snacks, sunglasses, and a winter favorite of hot chocolate. Christmas time is always an exciting time for little children and this beautiful story will only add to the excitement of that special day.

My Little Gifts: A Book of Sharing
Jo Witek, author
Christine Roussey, illustrator
Abrams
195 Broadway, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10007
www.abramsyoungreaders.com
9781419733208, $16.99, HC, 30pp, Ages 2-4, www.amazon.com

Dr. Dawn Menge
Reviewer

This holiday book is dedicated to the concepts of sharing from the heart. It begins with opening presents and the issue of sharing a new gift. The girls are soon comforted by their father and given permission to share their new gift. What is the sweetest gift to share? Friendship! The best gifts of all are those that are handmade. Knowledge and imagination are also precious gifts that are shared. It doesn't matter if a gift is big or small, fancy or plain, only that it comes from the heart. I highly recommend this book to teach the importance of giving to others.

Crash! Boom! A Math Tale
Robie H. Harris, author
Chris Chatterton, illustrator
Candlewick Press
99 Dover Street, Somerville, MA 02144
www.candlewick.com
9780763678272, $15.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Larissa Juliano
Reviewer

Little blue elephants? Adorable. Building blocks that have endless possibilities for counting and constructing? A must-have for inquiring minds. Problem-solving and persevering when things don't go the way you want them too? A life lesson for all of us. This story embraces all of these things as a little elephant tries to build a tower (as the reader counts along) only to keep crashing into it. He keeps going though and soon realizes that determination and a positive attitude can yield great results! (Ages 2-5)

Pip and Posy: The Christmas Tree
Axel Scheffler
Nosy Crow
c/o Candlewick Press
99 Dover Street, Somerville, MA 02144
www.candlewick.com
9781536202762, $12.99, HC, 32p, www.amazon.com

Darleen Wohlfeil
Reviewer

Holidays are a great time of caring and friendship. Pip and Posy are no different. Together they enjoy bringing home a Christmas tree, and bake up delightful goodies to decorate it. But in the process, Pip forgets the meaning of it all and takes everything for himself. Posy finds all their efforts gone, and Pip is left with a bellyache. Can Posy's kindness save the holiday, and can Pip recoup from his lapse of selfishness and once again enjoy the holiday together? It's easy to get caught up in all the good stuff and forget the real purpose of sharing. I'm glad our friends Pip and Posy gave us a timely reminder. (Ages 2-5)

Luna and the Moon Rabbit
Camille Whitcher
Scribblers
c/o Salariya Book Company
https://www.salariya.com
9781912233250, $16.95, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Julianne Black
Reviewer

Hauntingly beautiful and powerfully quiet, Luna and the Moon Rabbit will take your breath away. Floating through Luna's personal dreams and imagination, we escape to a world of
warm evening breezes and sparkling, star-filled skies. Grounded in the natural world and traditional Asian folklore, we are carried by the possibilities of giant ghostly rabbits and magical woodland scenery. Another bedtime must-have in my household. (Ages 3+)

Cuddly Critters for Little Geniuses
Susan Patterson, author
James Patterson, author
Hsinping Pan, illustrator
Jimmy Patterson
c/o Little, Brown Children's Books
c/o Hachette Book Group
1290 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10104
www.hachettebookgroup.com/kids
9780316487153, $8.99 Board Book
9780316486286, $17.99 HC; $9.99 Kindle, www.amazon.com

Larissa Juliano
Reviewer

An amazing story and resource that will enrapture inquisitive minds and scintillate reading fingertips as they soak up information on fascinating, lesser-known animals of our beloved planet. Packed with illustrations that are bright and eye-catching, plus awesome facts and information about these rarities, readers will be enthralled with all of the unusual and exotic creatures that are described by dream team Susan and James Patterson. A must have for animal lovers of all ages. (Ages 3-6)

All-of-a-Kind Family Hanukkah
Emily Jenkins, author
Paul O. Zelinsky, illustrator
Schwartz & Wade
c/o Random House Children's Books
1745 Broadway, 10-1, New York, NY 10019
www.randomhouse.com/kids
9780399554193, $17.99 HC, $9.99 Kindle, 40pp, www.amazon.com

Sherry L. Hoffman
Reviewer

Based on the classic books by Sydney Taylor, this is a perfect holiday story that highlights Hanukkah traditions shared by a full house of sisters and their parents. Readers will feel like they are welcomed guests as preparations for the first night are made. Equipped with a glossary of Yiddish terms, reference notes from both author and illustrator, and a link for additional information, this children's story not only tells a special tale, but also serves as a handy reference as well. (Ages 3-7)

King Ben and Sir Rhino
Eric Sailer
http://www.ericsailer.com
Two Lions
9781503939844, $17.99 HC, $1.99 Kindle, www.amazon.com

Julianne Black
Reviewer

Ben is King, and kings should be able to do as they please, right? Rhino is his most loyal subject, and subjects should obey the King, right? Maybe being King isn't all about getting your way after all ... a light story of friendship, sharing, and respect. (Ages 3-7)

Coming Home
Michael Morpurgo, author
Kerry Hyndman, illustrator
Candlewick Press
99 Dover Street, Somerville, MA 02144
www.candlewick.com
9781536200423, $17.99 HC, $6.99 PB, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Darleen Wohlfeil
Reviewer

This poetic tale leads us on an amazing journey. Tradition, imprinted instinct, habit or pattern, whatever it is that drives a heart on to its desired end, is powerful! It pushes, pulls, and encourages in the face of defeat. It whispers and inspires uplifting his wings. This little bird cannot rest until he is home again. (Ages 3-7)

If You Ever Want to Bring a Pirate to Meet Santa, DON'T!
Elise Parsley
Little, Brown Children's Books
c/o Hachette Book Group USA
1290 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10104
www.hachettebookgroup.com/kids
9780316466776, $17.99 HC, $9.99 Kindle, 40pp, www.amazon.com

Darleen Wohlfeil
Reviewer

This New York Times bestselling series brings us a holiday heads-up! Just in case it has ever run across your mind that it might be fun to take a pirate to see Santa this holiday, Magnolia says DON'T. After all, they are on the Naughty List. This fun-loving hilarity is multiplied by its great illustrations. Sure to bring some Christmas cheer! (Ages 4-7)

Merry Myrrh, the Christmas Bat
Regan W.H. Macaulay, author
Alex Zgud, illustrator
http://www.reganwhmacaulay.com
Guardian Angel Publishing
https://www.guardianangelpublishing.com
9781616339357, $10.95, PB, 24pp, www.amazon.com

Darleen Wohlfeil
Reviewer

Christmas joy fills the air with a life all its own. Every year it arrives with promises of wonder, whispers of hope, and a sense of well-being for any who are open to it, whether man, or beast, or even a family of little brown barn bats. Animals develop habits and patterns in their lives much like we do. Well, certainly this sweet little family of bats does! They close every year with the enchantment of Christmas lights, smells, and happy feelings, to keep them warm through their winter hibernation. The author and illustrator bring delightful animation, and a new awareness to these charming barn bats and their plight. More can be learned, and even help offered in preserving these little creatures. (Ages 4-7)

My Storee
Paul Russell, author
Aska, illustrator
EK Books
c/o Exisle Publishing
www.exislepublishing.com.au
9781925335774, $17.99, HC, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Darleen Wohlfeil
Reviewer

This is a great book for adults and children alike! Creativity doesn't seem to fall in neatly metered out portions, but dips and pours into any and all open receptacles. It stirs, tumbling into our thoughts, tickling our emotions, until it bursts boldly into our ideas, and there finds rest in our hands. Sometimes, that's right where it ends. The young boy in our story has found himself in this very place. Can he press past perfection, ignore the snorts of limitation, and soar free with imagination? This is truly a voice of encouragement, and a reminder to those who lead. (Ages 4-7)

It's Not Hansel and Gretel
Josh Funk, author
Edwardian Taylor, illustrator
https://www.joshfunkbooks.com
Two Lions
9781503902947, $17.99 HC, $4.99 Kindle, www.amazon.com

Darleen Wohlfeil
Reviewer

This is not your average, run-of-the mill fairy tale. And, even though the narrator has hilariously lost control of his story, this snicker and giggle tale is sure to delight. It's time for these wacky siblings to take their fairy tale into their own hands. So sit back and enjoy the gingerbread! (Ages 4-8)

The Boy and the Giant
David Litchfield
Abrams
195 Broadway, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10007
www.abramsyoungreaders.com
9781419733185, $16.99 HC, $9.99 Kindle, 40pp, www.amazon.com

Darleen Wohlfeil
Reviewer

There is a secret giant in Gableview who has hands the size of tabletops, legs as long as drainpipes, and feet as big as rowing boats. But little Billy thinks the Giant is just a tall tale that his granddad likes to tell. This is a delightful book all the way around. Its construction is appealing, its color scheme is inviting, and its message of acceptance is warm and much needed today. A truly great gift choice for the coming holidays. (Ages 4-8)

The Broken Ornament
Tony DiTerlizzi
Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
1230 Avenue of the Americas, 4th floor, New York, NY 10020
www.simonandschuster.com/kids
9781416939764, $17.99 HC, $10.99 Kindle, 48pp, www.amazon.com

Sherry L. Hoffman
Reviewer

The Broken Ornament is a heartwarming children's book about finding the magic of Christmas and the spirit of giving. What will become of Jack's wish for the best Christmas ever? Read along as award-winning author and illustrator Tony DiTerlizzi unveils a tale of holiday enchantment. This story is sure to be a treasured favorite for years to come. (Ages 4-8)

Reindolphins: A Christmas Tale
Kevin Brougher, author
Lisa Santa Cruz, illustrator
Missing Piece Press
http://missingpiecepress.com
9780997795905, $16.95, HC, 44pp, www.amazon.com

Darleen Wohlfeil
Reviewer

The beautiful artwork in this book creates a warm feeling of an old-time Christmas, with a very modern storyline. With all the world waiting in excited expectation for Santa's arrival, what ever would he do if his reindeer came up too sick for their historic flight? With only three days till Christmas, can he find an adequate replacement? Filled with cuteness and giggles we watch as all the beasts and critters apply. This is a great story of flexibility, and how change and disappointment can often set us up for new opportunities we never imagined. (Ages 4-12)

Hanukkah Hamster
Michelle Markel, author
Andre Ceolin, illustrator
Sleeping Bear Press
315 East Eisenhower Parkway, Suite 200, Ann Arbor, MI 48108
www.sleepingbearpress.com
9781585363995, $16.99 HC, $15.53 Kindle, 32pp, www.amazon.com

Sherry L. Hoffman
Reviewer

The holiday was so lonely for Edgar the cabdriver until a lost hamster appears in his cab. Author Michelle Markel tells the story of Hanukkah Hamster through this circumstantial pairing as illustrator Andre Ceolin portrays the warmth of Edgar's heart and the willingness he has to care for this lost pet. Readers will delight in this holiday tale of celebrating Hanukkah with a special friend who becomes like family. (Ages 5-7)

Reggie, The Burrowing Owl
Derrick J. Wood, author
Thomas J. Wood, author/illustrator
Primedia eLaunch LLC
http://primediaelaunch.com
9781642556933, $12.99 HC, $7.99 Kindle, 106pp, www.amazon.com

Darleen Wohlfeil
Reviewer

This is a fun narrative of a family's wonderful experience in discovering a lost little Burrowing Owl. This amazing little creature drew this large family's heart into one united beat, and captures the reader's as well. A fun family read! (Ages 5-12)

A Flicker of Hope
Julia Cook, author
MacKenzie Haley, illustrator
https://www.juliacookonline.com
National Center for Youth Issues
PO Box 22185, Chattanooga, TN 37422-2185
https://ncyi.org
9781937870522, $9.95, 32pp, PB, www.amazon.com

Darleen Wohlfeil
Reviewer

This is a much-needed book! We are taught, either by silence or action, that to admit lack or need is a weakness. Sometimes the dark clouds overhead seem too heavy and you feel like giving up. Little candle knows all about this. Bad grades, blasted on social media, worried about making the team, and wondering who her real friends are make things hard to deal with. The author and illustrator beautifully remind us of our humanity, and the need for connection to shine. (Ages 5-12)

Miranda and Maude: The Princess and the Absolutely Not a Princess
Emma Wunsch, author
Jessika von Innerebner, illustrator
Abrams
195 Broadway, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10007
www.abramsyoungreaders.com
9781419733741, $6.99 PB, (Amulet Paperbacks)
9781419731792, $12.99 HC, $8.86 Kindle, 144pp, www.amazon.com

Olivia Amiri, Age 11
Reviewer

This is a story about how people can come from completely different worlds, perspectives, and values, but still become friends once they accept their differences and have a basic understanding of each other. Miranda is a snobbish, snooty princess and Maude is a tomboy and extroverted activist who likes chickens and hard-boiled eggs. They start out as enemies, but find common ground and become friends. (Ages 7-10)

The Castle in the Mist
Amy Ephron
Philomel Books
c/o Penguin Group USA
345 Hudson Street, 15th floor, New York, NY 10014
http://us.penguingroup.com
9780399547003, $8.99, PB, 208pp (Puffin Books)
9780399546983, $16.99 HC, $8.99 Kindle, 192pp, www.amazon.com

Diana Perry
Reviewer

Tess and her brother, Max, are sent for the summer to their aunt's sleepy village in the English countryside, where excitement is as rare as a good wi-fi signal. So when Tess stumbles upon an old brass key that unlocks an ornately carved gate, attached to a strangely invisible wall, she jumps at the chance for adventure. And the world beyond the gate doesn't disappoint. This story book has it all -- magic, danger, and many mysteries to solve. Middle-grade readers won't be able to put it down. (Ages 8-12)

Carnival Magic
Amy Ephron
Philomel Books
c/o Penguin Group USA
345 Hudson Street, 15th floor, New York, NY 10014
http://us.penguingroup.com
9781524740238, $8.99, PB, 288pp, (Puffin Books)
9781524740214, $16.99 HC, 288pp, $9.99 Kindle, www.amazon.com

Diana Perry
Reviewer

Amy Ephron returns with a companion novel to The Castle in the Mist and creates a magical tale filled with adventure, mystery, fantasy, and fun as Tess and Max are back in England for another summer with their Aunt Evie - and they're incredibly excited about the travelling carnival that's come to town. This story hits the ground running from the first page and doesn't slow down until the end. A treasure with surprises at every turn! (Ages 8-12)

Dragonwatch: Wrath of the Dragon King
Brandon Mull
Shadow Mountain Publishing
P.O. Box 30178, Salt Lake City, Utah 84130-0178
www.shadowmountain.com
9781629724867, $18.99 HC, $10.49 Kindle, 416pp, www.amazon.com

Macaulay Smith, Age 7
Reviewer

Wrath of the Dragon King is an awesome book! Wyrmroost is in trouble! Celebrant, king of dragons, and his new evil ally, Ronodin, the dark unicorn, are out to get the Dominion Stone - a powerful relic. Kendra and Seth set out on an adventure to find brave creatures in Wyrmroost to help protect the world from Celebrant and his evil ways. I liked this book because of all of the dragons and adventure! If you like books about mythical creatures, adventure, friendship, and war, too, then this is the book for you! (Ages 8-12)

You Go First
Erin Entrada Kelly
Greenwillow Books
c/o HarperCollins Children's Books
10 East 53rd Street, New York, NY 10022
www.harpercollinschildrens.com
9780062414199, $6.99, PB, 304pp
9780062414182, $16.99 HC, $1.99 Kindle, 304pp, www.amazon.com

Diana Perry
Reviewer

Twelve-year-old Charlotte Lockard and 11-year-old Ben Boxer are separated by more than a 1,000 miles. On the surface, their lives seem vastly different - but the two have more in common than they think. They're both highly gifted. They're both experiencing family turmoil. And they both sit alone at lunch. Over the course of a week, Charlotte and Ben - online friends connected only by a Scrabble game - will intersect in unexpected ways, as they struggle to navigate the turmoil of middle school. This book will help any young reader who is having a rough time in their life as it encourages them to talk it out with a friend and it shows that bad things can happen - it's how you get through it that counts. (Ages 8-12)

Speechless
Adam P. Schmitt
Candlewick Press
99 Dover Street, Somerville, MA 02144
www.candlewick.com
9781536200928, $16.99 HC, $11.13 Kindle, 304pp, www.amazon.com

Diana Perry
Reviewer

As if being stuffed into last year's dress pants at his cousin's wake weren't uncomfortable enough, 13-year-old Jimmy has just learned that he has to say a few words at the funeral the next day. What could he possibly say about his cousin, who ruined everything they did? As Jimmy attempts to navigate the odd social norms of the wake, he draws on humor, heartfelt concern, and a good deal of angst while racking his brain and his memory for a decent and meaningful memory to share. But it's not until faced with a microphone that the realization finally hits him: it's not the words that are spoken that matter the most, but those that are truly heard. A must-read for kids and adults. (Ages 9-12)

Bluecrowne: A Greenglass House Story
Kate Milford
Clarion Books
c/o Houghton Mifflin Company
215 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10003
www.houghtonmifflinbooks.com
9781328466884, $17.99 HC, $9.99 Kindle, 272pp, www.amazon.com

Diana Perry
Reviewer

Lucy Bluecrowne is beginning a new life ashore with her stepmother and half brother, though she's certain the only place she'll ever belong is with her father on a ship of war as part of the crew. She doesn't care that living in a house is safer and the proper place for a 12-year-old girl; it's boring. But then two nefarious strangers identify her little brother as the pyrotechnical prodigy they need to enact an evil plan, and it will take all Lucy's fighting instincts to keep her family together. What a fun and adventurous book! Young readers will thrill with every discovery as they turn the pages. There are many twists and turns to this magnificent story plot. (Ages 10-12)

Path to the Stars: My Journey from Girl Scout to Rocket Scientist
Sylvia Acevedo
Clarion Books
c/o Houghton Mifflin Company
215 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10003
www.houghtonmifflinbooks.com
9781328809568, $17.99 HC, $9.99, 320pp, www.amazon.com

Olivia Amiri, Age 11
Reviewer

This is an inspiring book for kids, especially girls, women, and all people. What I loved about the book was that regardless of Sylvia Acevedo's problems, she always was fiercely determined to improve herself. She didn't give herself an excuse for not doing something because she grew up in a traditional Mexican-American family not speaking English, she instead learned English. She wasn't great at making friends, but with the help of what she learned at Girl Scouts, she applied to her life and she succeeded and excelled, from girl scout to Stanford University to becoming a rocket scientist. (Ages 10-12)

Game Changer
Tommy Greenwald
Abrams
195 Broadway, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10007
www.abramsyoungreaders.com
9781419731433, $16.99 HC, $9.99 Kindle, 304pp, www.amazon.com

Diana Perry
Reviewer

Thirteen-year-old Teddy Youngblood is in a coma fighting for his life after an unspecified football injury at training camp. His family and friends flock to his bedside to support his recovery -- and to discuss the events leading up to the tragic accident. Was this an inevitable result of playing a violent sport, or was something more sinister happening on the field that day? A must-read for any parent, coach, or young football player. (Ages 10-14)


James A. Cox, Editor-in-Chief
Diane C. Donovan, Editor
Midwest Book Review
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Oregon, WI 53575-1129
phone: 1-608-835-7937
e-mail: mbr@execpc.com
e-mail: mwbookrevw@aol.com
http://www.midwestbookreview.com


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